Cover image for American insects : a handbook of the insects of America north of Mexico
American insects : a handbook of the insects of America north of Mexico
Arnett, Ross H.
Personal Author:
Second edition.
Publication Information:
Boca Raton, Fla. : CRC Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
xvii, 1003 pages : illustrations, map ; 28 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL474 .A76 2000 2ND EDITION Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



Offering a complete accounting of the insects of North America, this handbook is an up-dated edition of the first handbook ever compiled in the history of American entomology.
By using American Insects, A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico, Second Edition, readers can quickly determine the taxonomic position of any species, genus, or higher taxon of insect known to occur in America and Canada. Every order, family, and genus is conveniently numbered and indexed, making this volume the only complete single source for all of the names of orders, families, and genera currently available.

This book fills the need for an accurate way to identify, with the several hundred drawings and photos, the common insects of all orders. Now there is a tool available to those working without a major collection and library; and those who would like to have a general knowledge of insect life without becoming overwhelmed by the vast number of minute insect species.

This usable guide provides sizes, shapes, color patterns and salient features of some species of each major family by pointing out those groups most likely to be encountered, including all North America pests.

What's Newnbsp;innbsp;this Edition?
Researchers in many orders use the results of cladistics, a new tool for determining the relationship of orders, families, genera, and species of organisms, including plants as well as animals Specialists have provided lengthy lists of generic changes Many of the identification keys have been revised by adding more illustrations and making sure all description terms are in the Glossary The bibliographies of each Order section have been updated to include all important works that have appeared since the original edition

Author Notes

The late Ross H. Arnett, Jr., Ph.D. (Cornell University) was a research insect taxonomist, research associate of the Florida State Collection of Arthropods, adjunct professor of entomology at the University of Florida, and a cooperating scientist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Formerly a U.S.D.A. taxonomic entomologist at the Smithsonian Institution, and for many years a professor of entomology at Purdue University and elsewhere, he was also a noted freelance writer of books on natural history subjects

Reviews 1

Choice Review

This bulky paperback, once purchased, should be immediately rebound in hard cover; it will receive lots of use. Any biologist with a passing interest in insects, any student looking for a pen-and-ink drawing of a particular beetle, or any reference librarian checking out a common name for an insect will find a use for this volume. This new edition (1st ed., CH, Dec'85) gathers together as much as anyone needs to gain entry into the vast entomological literature. This book is a tribute to Arnett's single-minded devotion, over the course of 80 years, to the study of insects. The identification keys that his book contains will enable one to classify any insect found in North America (north of Mexico). The short descriptions and illustrations allow even amateurs to flip through its pages and determine, roughly, what insect they have in hand. According to the author, there are 87,107 different types of insects in North America, all of which are accounted for in this book. Although its bulk is intimidating, the unwieldy size of this book reflects the remarkable diversity of insects found around us. All levels. G. Stevens; formerly, University of New Mexico

Table of Contents

Forewordp. v
Prefacep. vii
Part I Introduction
1. General Considerationsp. 3
2. Insect Classification and Systematicsp. 11
3. Identification Featuresp. 23
4. Insect Ecology, Behavior, and Distributionp. 29
5. Insect Collectingp. 37
6. The Orders of Insectsp. 63
Part II The Insect Fauna of America, North of Mexico
1. Collembola (Springtails and Allies)p. 81
2. Protura (Proturans)p. 89
3. Diplura (Diplurans)p. 91
4. Archaeognatha (Bristletails)p. 97
5. Zygentomaa (Silverfish and Allies)p. 99
6. Ephemeroptera (Mayflies)p. 109
7. Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies)p. 119
8. Plecoptera (Stoneflies)p. 135
9. Embioptera (Webspinners)p. 147
10. Phasmatodea (Walkingsticks)p. 149
11. Orthoptera (Grasshoppers, Katydids, and Crickets)p. 153
12. Grylloblatodea (Rock Crawlers)p. 181
13. Dermaptera (Earwigs)p. 185
14. Dictyoptera (Mantids and Cockroaches)p. 189
15. Isoptera (Termites)p. 201
16. Zoraptera (Angel Insects)p. 209
17. Psocoptera (Barklice and Booklice)p. 213
18. Mallophaga (Biting Lice)p. 229
19. Anoplura (Sucking Lice)p. 235
20. Hemiptera (True Bugs)p. 241
21. Homoptera (Cicadas, Hoppers, Whiteflies, Aphids, and Scale Insects)p. 287
22. Thysanoptera (Thrips)p. 331
23. Neuroptera (Dobsonflies, Lacewings, Antlions, and Allies)p. 341
24. Coleoptera (Beetles, and Weevils)p. 357
25. Hymenoptera (Wasps, Ants, and Bees)p. 531
26. Trichoptera (Caddisflies)p. 615
27. Lepidoptera (Moths, Skippers, and Butterflies)p. 631
28. Mecoptera (Scorpionflies and Allies)p. 831
29. Diptera (Flies and Keds)p. 835
30. Strepsiptera (Stylopids)p. 921
31. Siphonaptera (Fleas)p. 925
Glossaryp. 935
Indexp. 947