Mecoptera


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Related to Mecoptera: Panorpidae, Siphonaptera, Boreidae

Mecoptera

[me′käp·tə·rə]
(invertebrate zoology)
The scorpion flies, a small order of insects; adults are distinguished by the peculiar prolongation of the head into a beak, which bears chewing mouthparts.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Mecoptera

 

(scorpion flies), an order of insects with complete metamorphosis. The body reaches 3 cm in length. The two pairs of identical wings are reticulate and transparent; sometimes they may have dark spots. The head is elongated into a beak, and the mouthparts are fitted for chewing. In some species the caudal part of the abdomen has a swelling that resembles the abdominal tip of a scorpion. The pupa is exarate.

There are about 300 species of scorpion flies, distributed everywhere but not usually found in great numbers. More than ten species are present in the USSR. Fossils dating back to the Permian have been found. Scorpion flies of the family Panorpidae feed on dead insects; the larvae resemble caterpillars but can be distinguished by the presence of eight pairs of abdominal legs. Flies of the family Bittacidae resemble weevils, but they have two pairs of wings. The Bittacidae are predators. Their larvae resemble caterpillars. (For a discussion of the family Boreidae seeBOREIDAE.)

REFERENCE

Zhizn’ zhivotnykh, vol. 3. Moscow, 1969.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Archibald, S.B., Rasnitsyn, A.R, and Akhmetiev, M.A., 2005b, The ecology and distribution of Cenozoic Eomeropidae (Mecoptera), and a new species of Eomerope Cockerell from the Early Eocene McAbee locality; British Columbia, Canada: Annals of the Entomological Society of America, v.
The first mecopteroids (Insecta, Papilionida = Mecopteroidea) and the origin of scorpionflies (Panorpida = Mecoptera), with description of a legless eruciform larva from the Lower Permian of Tshekarda.
tuber, remain undescribed [26] and their discovery "is certainly the most exciting thing left to be done in the study of North American Mecoptera" [14].
The order Mecoptera contains the scorpionflies (genus Panorpa) and hangingflies (genus Bittacus).
2000 Mecoptera Byers 1977 Trichoptera Munoz-Quesada 1999 Lepidoptera Morais et al.
Sexual selection and nuptial feeding behavior in Bittacus apicalis (Insecta: Mecoptera).
Panorpa (Mecoptera: panorpidae) Scorpion-flies: Systems for understanding resource defence polygyny and alternative male reproductive efforts.
Alternative female choice tactics in the scorpionfly Hylobittacus apicalis (Mecoptera) and their implications.
This family was once considered a hypothetical primitive taxon in the order Mecoptera (Tillyard 1926, 1935; Remington 1968); however, recent phylogenetic work disputes this placement (Willmann 1987, 1989; Whiting 2002).
In a spermatophylax-donating katydid, Decticus verrucivorus (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae), and a saliva-secreting scorpionfly, Panorpa vulgaris (Mecoptera: Panorpidae), sperm transfer is subject to female control and influenced by the size of the food gift (Wedell and Arak 1989; Thornhill and Sauer 1991).