Hexapoda (Insecta): Characteristics

Systematic position

Kingdom: Animalia
Sub-kingdom: Eumetazoa
Super-phylum: Ecdysosoa
Phylum: Arthropoda
Sub-phylum: Hexapoda

Hexapoda Characteristics

Hexapoda (6 legs) Source Wikipedia

Hexapoda Characteristics

Ø  A large taxa, includes insects and a small group of wingless arthropods

Ø  Body plan: 3 parts, head, thorax and abdomen

Ø  Head with six segments

Ø  Thorax with three pairs of jointed legs (hence the name hexapoda)

Ø  Head bears a presegmental acron

Ø  Acron bears compound eyes

Ø  Head segments are very closely fused

Ø  Appendages absent in segment 1 and 3

Ø  Segment 2 bears a pair of antennae

Ø  Segment 4 bears mandibles for crushing the food items

Ø  Segment 5 bears maxillae for chewing

Ø  Segment 6 bears the labium which forms the lower lip of mouth

Ø  Mouth lies between the fourth and fifth segments

General characters of class Insecta

Flesh Fly (source wikipedia)

Ø  Thorax composed of three segments, each with a single pair of legs

Ø  Each leg with single walking branch composed of five segments

Ø  Abdomen usually with 11 segments

Ø  Abdominal appendages are absent or extremely reduced

Ø  Abdomen contains most of the internal systems such as respiratory, excretory and reproductive systems

Ø  Respiration through tracheae

Ø  Excretion through malphigian tubules

Ø  Development always indirect

Ø  Larval stage present, which undergo complete metamorphosis

Classification of Hexapoda

Sub-phylum Hexapoda is divided into two classes

Class – 1 : Insecta

Class – 2 : Entognatha

Sub-phylum Hexapoda

Classification of Sub-Phylum Hexapoda

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