Subclass: Pterygota

A photograph of the bluebottle _Calliphora vicina_.

A bluebottle (Calliphora vicina), the true flies are extremely agile in flight.

The winged insects (Pterygota) go through distinct stages of development before they become adult. There are two forms of development:

  1. Complete metamorphosis
  2. Incomplete metamorphosis

Both of these life cycles involve the insect shedding its skin in order to move to the next life stage. The process of shedding the skin is called moulting, or ecdysis. The stages between moults are called instars or stadiums.

Metamorphosis is controlled by three types of hormones, including a neurosecretory hormone. Neurosecretory means it is produced in the insect brain.

The details of the process of metamorphosis allows the winged insects to be classified into two main groups:

Back to Insect Orders.