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the web of life in southern Africa

Hemiptera (bugs, scale insects)

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Ecdysozoa > Panarthropoda > Tritocerebra > Phylum: Arthopoda > Mandibulata > Atelocerata > Panhexapoda > Hexapoda > Insecta (insects) > Dicondyla > Pterygota > Metapterygota > Neoptera > Eumetabola > Paraneoptera > Condylognatha

Bugs have sucking mouthparts whereas groups that can have a similar appearance, such as the beetles, have biting mouthparts. Most bugs are plant suckers making them important agricultural and garden pests, although there are a number of groups, such as the assassin bugs (Reduviidae), that are predatory.


Note: The group known as the Homoptera constitutes the suborders Sternorryncha and Auchenorrhyncha but it is paraphyletic and has therefore been excluded from this classification which is based on Carver et al. (1991).

Sternorryncha (aphids, scale insects, whiteflies, psyllids)


Auchenorrhyncha Auchenorrhyncha (cicadas, spittle bugs, leafhoppers, treehoppers, planthoppers, and relatives)




Anoplocnemis curvipes


  • Carver, M., Gross, G.F. & Woodward, T.E. 1991. Hemiptera (bugs, leafhoppers, cicadas, aphids, scale insects, etc.). In: The Insects of Australia - a Textbook for Students and Research Workers Volume 1. Melbourne University Press, Melbourne.