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

Your answer to the previous question was that your insect does not have scale-covered wings and mouthparts that are like a coiled or twisted tube.

Leafhopper
These insects have slanting, roof-like wings. They butt up against one another above the back and then slope downward and outward. When looking at the insect head-on, the silhouette of the wings is similar to a roof or tent. The pictured insects are black-faced leafhoppers (Graminella nigrifrons). Photo credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture/ Stephen Ausmus.

Does your insect have wings that are roof-like, slanting downward and outward from the middle of the back?

This question is asking how your insect holds its wings. If the left and right wing are tilted, so that they are higher toward the insect’s midline and lower toward the outer edge, resulting in a tent or roof shape over the body, answer “yes.”

Click one of the following:

Yes, my insect has wings that are roof-like, slanting downward and outward from the middle of the back.

No, my insect does not have this characteristic.


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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