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Field Identification

The following photographs of insects are provided to assist students in basic insect identification. Be aware that dichotomous keys, similar to those used for order classification, also exist for separating insects into families and even further into genera and species. The use of such keys is beyond the scope of this book in most cases. However, in some instances, these may need to be referred to for the identification of less common insects. For the purposes of this text, once a student has correctly placed an insect into its proper order, comparison to color photographs or to other properly identified specimens (such as those in reference collections) can be a productive method of assigning common names to collected insects. In addition to the following color photographs, many field guides can assist in family and common name classification.

All 4-H and FFA students in Indiana are required to recognize order and common names for the following list of insects. To assist in identification, a color photo of each of these is provided together with a brief description of the insect, its biology, pest status, and life cycle.

Information regarding selected pest insects in their damaging stage, together with life history and control recommendations is provided in an accompanying text How to Manage Radical Bugs, ID 403.