Insect Morphology is currently under construction.

Terminology of Orientation

lateral view or side view

dorsal view, the upper surface

ventral view, the lower surface

anterior, the head end

posterior, the hind end



distal or apical, being further from the body

proximal or basal, nearer to the body


The Head

The Thorax



Picture courtesy of Don Herbison-Evans.






Foreleg of preying mantis.

Terminology specific to insect orders:

Blattodea - cockroaches

Coleoptera - beetles

Diptera - flies

Hemiptera - true bugs

Hymenoptera - bees, wasps, ants

Lepidoptera - butterflies, moths

Mantodea - preying mantids

Neuroptera - lacewings

Orthoptera - grasshoppers, katydids

Odonta - dragonflies

Araneae - spiders