The scientific study of insects.

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Fire Ant Behavior

I've noticed for the past few weeks that near a small fire ant nest near my house there will be a new concentrated "large" pile of dead fire ants every few days. I went and checked out the pile and ...
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Can mosquitos bite in self-defense?

When chasing away wasps or bees thee is a danger of them stinging us in self-defense. Can a similar danger arise when chasing away a mosquito which is otherwise not hungry? I understand that ...
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Do ants or other insects sleep, and if so why?

I was thinking yesterday about insects (as there was a spider in the house, and I couldn't help but think of anything else, even though they aren't insects), and I started to wonder if ants sleep? ...
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What kind of spider is this? And is it dangerous? (photo)

I found this spider hanging from a web off the side of my house (in Buffalo, NY). It's probably 3-4in total length. Any thoughts on what kind of spider this is? And if it's dangerous?
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Why do I see so many handicapped dorbeetles?

Living in southern Germany, I often visit nearby forests and pastures. From early spring to autumn, I frequently see lots of dorbeetles on my wanderings. An estimated amount of 50% of those bugs seem ...
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Why do moths not die when they fly into a window?

Sometimes at night when I'm inside with a light on, I can hear (I'm sure) moths fly into the window, and it's so loud I can sometimes hear it over the TV from the other side of the room. Since ...
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Identification of this insect

These insects lived inside the wood of my bed in little round holes. They bite, lеаving very itchy red marks. And when crushed stink really bad. In the picture the lines are notebook lines for size ...
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Can ants sense food from a long distance?

I recently had ants find and then swarm to a food container that I put down on a desk, and I'm curious as to whether an ant would have needed to get lucky, discovering the food after crawling up the ...
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What is this creature?

Since it has six legs, I believe it's some sort of insect, but I could be wrong. I spotted it in my Central Texas backyard (Austin area). It was very slow and not at all skittish. For size ...
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(How) can a pink grasshopper exist?

I saw this foto on Reddit recently: Is this possible? How can a grasshopper become like this? Is this just natural genetic mutation?
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What is this beetle?

During a pit stop on the road from North Carolina to New York (somewhere in Delaware) I found the following (dead) insect in the car park: As you can see from the quarter next to it (25 mm ...
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Pollinator mating system in orchids

I came across three terms in an article on pseudocopulation. However I don't quite understand what it means. They are: 1) solitary and haplodiploid 2) social and haplodiploid 3) diploid These ...
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Do bees make honey from fallen fruit?

I know bees make honey from nectar, and I know they drink the juice of fallen fruit, but do they actually make honey from fruit, or do they only eat from it for themselves?
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Do flies actually take off backwards?

I've been told that flies take off backwards, but I haven't really been able to prove it to myself. The closest I've gotten was noticing that they fly into window glass back-first, with their heads ...
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261 views

What is the name if this glittery fly seen in Pittsburgh?

I have photographed the following fly which is iridescent green in Pittsburgh, PA. I guess it was about 0.5-1.5cm long. Can you help me to identify it?
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Is this ladybird larva secreting a protective fluid?

I know that adult ladybird beetles can secrete a fluid to keep predators from eating them. Can the larvae do that too? Or are these yellow droplets something else?
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Can butterflies still fly after their wings are touched?

I have a question about butterflies: When I was a kid, I was told not to ever touch a butterflies wing, otherwise it would loose its ability to fly. This was connected to some dust which was supposed ...
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47 views

Cicada Killer Behavior

I've had a giant wasp hanging around outside my window the past few days, so I've resolved to learn more about it. I believe it is a male Cicada Killer, because it displays the following behavior: ...
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Where do flies go?

Where are flies attracted most? Apart from food odours, of course. Why do they seem to be attracted by hot and humid places? Do they prefer shades or light? Why do they tend to get inside very easily? ...
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How can flies sense mirrors?

I've noted that flies in my house have no problem landing on even perfectly clean mirrors. Why don't they fly straight into them? Can they sense that there is a surface there, even though they can't ...
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Does a presence of ants on a plant mean that the plant has been infested by aphids?

Ants protect aphids from their predators (such as ladybirds): Aphids and other hemipteran insects secrete a sweet liquid called honeydew, when they feed on plant sap. The sugars in honeydew are a ...
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What is this black insect (wasp-like?) South America?

I live in the Pacific coast of South America. Seems to have two wings, like a wasp's. The "tail" is a bit bulky but is only connected to the rest of the body by a thin part. It's black overall. The ...
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how many abdominal sclerites would be there in a cockroach

Every tegmina of a cockroach has Sclerites which are homologous to the bones of humans. Every abdominal segment of cockroach consists of two lateral sclerite plates called pleura along with a dorsal ...
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what would be the total number of pleura in the exoskeleton of cockroach

basically as far as i know cockroach consists of 10 terga and 9 sterna but what are the total number of pleura present in the cockroach pleura are situated between tergum and sternum of a body ...
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What is the scientific name of this butterfly?

I have this butterfly but I don't know its scientific name. I think that it's a common butterfly which can be seen everywhere (btw, I'm in Taiwan.) Thanks for your help :D
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Can insects feel pain?

Insects do have a nervous system, even if it isn't nearly as complex as that of other animals. Can insects or other arthropods sense pain? Does their aversion to harmful stimuli suggest that they can ...
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If I squash an insect and it produces red “juice”, does it always mean it is a blood-sucking type?

If I squash an insect and it produces red "juice", does it always mean it is a blood-sucking type of insect? Or do some insects have red "juice" themselves, so the color is red on its own and not ...
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Are insects attracted to near infrared light?

Do insects see near infrared light? If yes, are they attracted to it at night, as they are to visible light sources? I am building something similar to a home-made trailcam with a Raspberry Pi ...
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256 views

Where do butterflies sleep?

Do butterflies (insects) sleep, and if so, where?? I have googled for information but didn't get an exact answer.
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How do climate and location affect the Pine Processionary moth?

I have statistics on the occurence of the Pine Processionary moth (Thaumetopoea pityocampa); we have the regions that are located in Algeria, infested area in percent, the defiliation degree (small, ...
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73 views

What species of butterfly is this?

This big fellow came to visit my kitchen (in Hong Kong) a bit earlier. It is brown with some longitudinal white stripes, banana/boomerang-shaped patterns towards the middle, and an eye-like marking on ...
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Classification of degree of infested areas by pine processionary moth on regions

I'm making a thesis about pine processionary moth distribution on the regions of algeria! i'm making tests about if there are spatial autocorrelation of this insects on the regions. and i'm doing ...
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Is there a good explanation for this swarming pattern?

A film clip would be helpful here. A few days ago I noticed a swarm of newly hatched flying bugs about 20 feet away from me with the sun behind them so the shape of swarming (such as it was) was easy ...
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Why do flies fly in circles?

Lying on my bed, doing nothing I recently noticed flies usually fly in small circles, right under my ceiling lamp. Worth noting - the lamp was off as it was middle of a day. And those flies kept ...
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How tolerant are ants to cold?

There was a trail of what are commonly known as sugar ants (small, brown, hyperactive) in my kitchen. Three of them walked onto an ice tray placed in their path. They only walked a short distance on ...
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Are spiders part of the study of entomology?

The definition of entomology says it is the science of studying insects. I know spiders are not insects but does entomology include studying spiders as well? Otherwise is there any name to the ...
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How best to count bees entering and leaving a hive to measure hive activity?

This is my first question here, so I apologize for all mistakes I could have possibly made. I'm a high school student in East-Central Europe and I need to complete some research for a biology contest ...
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263 views

Will the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide lead to larger insects?

From my understanding, the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide will also increase oxygen levels. That makes me wonder if in the near future insects will grow larger than they are today, since their ...
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Can an insect poison itself with food?

Is it possible that an insect poisons itself while eating "wrong" plants/fruits/... and have symptoms like pain (may hard to measure or detect) or orientation disorder? Background: I observed a ...
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Why is the mosquito a definitive host in malaria?

I thought that the definition of a definitive host was that the parasite had to sexually reproduce in that particular host. I've been told that mosquitoes are the definitive host for the plasmodium ...
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translation of scientific names [closed]

I am trying to determine the "translated" meanings (not seeking the common names) of different insects, (presently some bees and wasps). Does anyone know of a printed or internet resource that ...
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Why do insectivorous birds migrate?

Living in northern latitudes, I have always wondered why do migratory birds invest so much time and energy to travel twice a year the vast distances between their breeding grounds and wintering areas. ...
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84 views

What type of insect is this?

ery bug 1]1 What insect are these? Found them indoors. No wings, just crawling on the walls.
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Why do cockroaches burst from soapy water?

(careful, disturbing!) I was experimenting with some stray cockroaches that ended up falling in my bath tub overnight (there is currently an infestation undergoing in my apartment building) and I ...
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184 views

How do ants spontaneously grow wings?

On hot summer nights we get flocks of ants that have grown wings (from what I know to migrate nests). It appears the wings are not permanent, but are grown for a temporary purpose. From what I ...
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107 views

What insect is this..?

Can anyone tell me what kind of insect (if it is one) is this...!! Or is it the pupa of some insect? Well I don't think that the whole big thing is the insect itself, it appears to be just a kind of ...
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Which direction are wild beehives combs oriented?

Is it on the North-South axis, the East-West axis or some other orientation?
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254 views

What modern insects are not (flying OR descended from flying ancestors)?

What modern insects are not flying or descended from flying ancestors? (I read somewhere that 99% are, so of course I instantly became curious which aren't. xD ) EDIT: Sorry, I should have been ...
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Identification of a mysterious lifeform, what is this? [duplicate]

For the third time in a row, I found a mysterious life-form inside my house. I live in the Netherlands in the Eindhoven region, in a city called Oss near a forest area. Before I set it free outside, I ...
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Molting in arthropods

Do all the arthropods molt ? Which ones do not molt ? Why don't they need to molt ? I tried googling this - but did not get satisfactory answers.