Baby Insects


With young children, one good way to introduce the concept of metamorphosis is to begin by asking them about the names for baby animals.

"What do we call a baby dog?" ... a puppy
"What do we call a baby cat?" ... a kitten
"What do we call a baby cow?" ... a calf
...
"What do we call a baby bear?" ... a cub
and finally,
"What do we call a baby insect?"

The answer to this final question depends on the type of development ...

  • In ametabolous insects, the immatures are called young.

  • In hemimetabolous insects, the immatures are called nymphs.
    (A naiad is an aquatic nymph.)

  • In holometabolous insects, the immatures are called larvae and pupae.
    (Caterpillars, maggots, wireworms, and grubs are types of larvae.)

  • Examples:

    Bess Beetle

    Larva

    Adult

    Butterfly

    Larva

    Adult

    Dragonfly

    Naiad

    Adult


    And finally, here's a little TEST for all you "know-it-alls" out there in cyberspace ...

    Know any others? ... e-mail me at john_meyer@ncsu.edu


    Return to Transformers or Homepage John R. Meyer
    Last Updated:   30 December 2013 Department of Entomology
    NC State University