What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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Identify families

Termitoidea superfamily Alates

    • Tarsi distinctly 5-segmented, with arolium; antenna with 29–32 segments; hind wing with anal lobe Mastotermitidae
    • Tarsi 4-segmented, viewed from above, with or without arolium; antennae rarely with more than 22 segments; hind wing without anal lobe 2
  2. (1)
    • Left mandible with apical and 3 well-defined marginal teeth; right mandible with
    • small subsidiary tooth at anterior base of 1st marginal tooth (Fig. 20.14D-F) 3
    • Left mandible with apical and 2 more or less well-defined marginal teeth, often with a long cutting edge between them; right mandible
    • without subsidiary tooth between apical and 1st marginal tooth (Fig. 20.14G-L) 4
  3. (2)
  4. (2)
    • Fore wing scale more than twice length of hind wing scale; wings reticulate Kalotermitidae
    • Fore wing scale less than twice length of hind wing scale; wings not reticulate Termitidae


Termitoidea superfamily Soldiers

    • Tarsi 5-segmented Mastotermitidae
    • Tarsi 4-segmented (rarely with a rudimentary 5th segment) 2
  2. (1)
    • Cerci long, 4- or 5-segmented Termopsidae
    • Cerci short, 2-segmented 3
  3. (2)
    • Pronotum with well-developed, elevated, convex anterior lobe and, as a result, saddle-shaped Termitidae
    • Pronotum transversely arched to almost flat, without elevated anterior lobe, concave to slightly convex in front 4
  4. (3)


Currently the Lucid key supplied (written by Dr Beth Mantle, CSIRO Entomology) is only for the Blaberoidea, Blattoidea,and the Polyphagoidea superfamilies (Cockroaches). Interactive keys to the former order, Isoptera (termites), are currently unavailable. The dichotomous ones from The Insects of Australia (Second Edition, 1991) have been provided until the interactive ones are ready. These keys are presented as they originally appeared