Common lacewings

Although some species arc brown, these insects arc generally green. The wings are iridescent, with veins that form complex patterns and fork at the wing margins. The eyes have a bright golden or reddish shine. Adults are nocturnal and arc attracted to lights, often entering houses to hibernate. Many have special bat-detecting sensors in their wings.

• I >11 I CYCLE Females lay stalked eggs on vegetation, and the pale larvae pupate in round silk cocoons stuck to leaves. Many larvae cover themselves with the bodies of prey as a disguise. Adults and larvae are predators of aphids, thrips, scale insects, and mites.

• OCCl JRRFNCF Worldwide. On vegetation in varied habitats, including arid areas, and in ants' nests.

• reddish eyes veins forked a! » hind margin long, threadlike • antennae chkysoi'a species are delicate and large-winged insects. When at rest, they hold their wings, rooflike, over their body.

orange-brown head and thorax

two zigzag veins /// ► outer half of wings nothochr ysa cap it at a is larger and duller than the green lacewings. It is found close to the trunks of various trees and in the crowns of oaks and pines.

Larvae have curved jaws, hairy warts, and wcll-developed legs.

Larval feeding habits



No. of species ^qq

Man rispios

Also called mantidflics, mantispids have front legs exactly like those of praying mantids (see p.73), which they use to seize prey. The first segment of the thorax is elongate, and the two pairs of narrow wings are of roughly equal size.

• life Cycle Small, white, short-stalked eggs arc laid in groups of several hundred on tree bark. The young nymphs are mobile and hunt for spiders' egg sacs, inside which they feed. Some species parasitize bees.

• OCCl JRRENCE Worldwide, mainly in warm, temperate and tropical regions. In well-vegctated areas.

larvae have six thoracic-legs and become maggotlike as thev mature.

CUMACIIUA species have a distinctive body shape. The one shown here is probably protected from attack by its bright, wasplike coloration.

wings held in wasp!i he position wasp/ike black-and-yellow markings

wings held in wasp!i he position wasp/ike black-and-yellow markings




No. of species


black spots on head and long, narrow wings

> tomatares citrinvs is named after its distinctive lemon-yellow wings and is probably distasteful to predators such as birds. Many members of this genus are found in Africa.

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