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ISM System :Dragonfly Glossary
Dragonfly & Damselfly Collection
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abdomen (noun) last of three segments of the insect body; Odonata abdomens have ten segments
damselfly (noun) characterized by two identical pairs of narrow wings, usually folded over the abdomen when resting, small, widely separated eyes, small size, and slender body (member of suborder Zygoptera)
dragonfly (noun) characterized by broad wings held out from the body (fore and hind wings different), large eyes, touching in most groups, and large body size (member of suborder Anisoptera)
emerge (verb) to leave water and undergo metamorphosis (change of form) into an adult
exoskeleton (noun) outer hard part of an insect, including legs and wings
larva (noun) pl. larvae immature stage of Odonata (also called a nymph)
metamorphosis (noun) the process of changing from a larva to an adult that happens within the larval exoskeleton
molt (verb) to shed the skin (When this takes place, the larva can grow while the skin is soft.)
nymph (noun) another term for larva
Odonata (Latin noun) the order (scientific classification) to which dragonflies and damselfies belong
ovipositor (noun) a structure at the end of the female of some Odonata species that deposits eggs into the stems of water plants (ovi = egg, posit = put)
terminal appendages (noun) structures at the end of the abdomen
thorax (noun) the second section of the body of an insect; it bears the wings and legs

*This glossary was adapted from one used on the University of Puget Sound biology Web site.

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