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ARTHROPOD IDENTIFICATION (CLASSES)

Arthropods are divided further into categories called Classes. These classes combine arthropods with similar characteristics and / or similar habits. Although there a large number of these classes, we are only concerned with a few.

Crustacea

The characteristics of this class are:
  • They breathe through gills
  • They must either live in water or very moist conditions
  • Most have two pairs of antennae
  • Most have at least five pairs of legs
Although lobster, crabs, and crayfish are members of this class, the Sowbug and the Pillbug are the pests that we are concerned with. More information can be found at Pestdude's MISCELLANEOUS PESTS site.

Diplopoda

The characteristics of this class are:
  • They have bodies made of segments, all of which are identical, except for the first segment which is the head
  • Each body segment has two pairs of legs
  • Their antennae are short.

The members of this class are the millipedes. More information can be found at Pestdude's MISCELLANEOUS PESTS site.

Chilopoda

The characteristics of this class are:
  • They have many segments similar to the diplopoda (millipede)
  • They have only one pair of legs for each body segment
  • Their antennae are long and jointed
  • Some can also inflict a painful bite.

The members of this class are centipedes. More information can be found at Pestdude's MISCELLANEOUS PESTS site.

Arachnida

The characteristics of this class are:
  • Usually the head and the thorax fused together to form a cephalothorax
  • The adults have four pairs of legs
  • No antennae
  • Some immature members may only have three pairs of legs.

The common members of this class are spiders, mites, and ticks. You can find more information at Pestdude's ARACHNIDA site.

Insecta

The characteristics of this class are:
  • Three body parts; the head, the thorax, and the abdomen
  • A pair of antennae
  • Usually one or two pairs of wings
  • Three pairs of legs

This is the largest class of arthropods that are of a concern to pest management. There are a number of orders that further define the insecta class. Go to the INSECTA CLASS page for further identification help.

If you have any questions, please ask Pestdude! pestdude@triad.rr.com