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Insect Identification Key
Identify Insects in Michigan ... and beyond!

Your answer to the previous question was that your insect doesn’t have the following set of characteristics: a body covered with scales, and the overall appearance of a wingless moth.

Wide abdomen, oval body
This insect has a wide abdomen and overall oval body shape, as described in the question. The beak-like mouthparts are not visible in this photo. Photo credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Piotr Naskrecki.

Does your insect have a wide abdomen, giving it an overall oval appearance, and does it also have beak-like mouthparts?

Look for a long spear-like beak. Note that the insect may be holding its mouthparts down along its ventral (belly) side. See the photo at right for an example of a wide abdomen and overall oval body shape.


Click one of the following:

Yes, my insect has a wide abdomen, giving it an overall oval appearance, and also has beak-like mouthparts.

No, my insect does not have these characteristics.


I would like to return to the start of this key.





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Unless noted otherwise, photographs on this website are the property of the photographers and may not be reused without written permission from the photographers. To obtain permission, email the photographers here. High-resolution versions of the photographs are available.

Photos at the top of this website are (from left to right): potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) — photo credit: Scott Bauer, U.S. Department of Agriculture; ebony jewelwing (Calopteryx maculata)— photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; sweat bee (Agapostemon splendens) — photo credit: Natalie Allen and Stephanie Kolski, U.S. Geological Survey; preying mantis, monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus), hellgrammite (aka toe biter) larva and eyed click beetle (Alaus oculatus) — photo credit: Leslie Mertz, DailyGraceCards.com; Halloween pennant (Celithemis eponina) — photo credit: Kay Meng, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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