Maintenance and Locomotion, Biology tutorial

Digestive System:

Virtually the entire organic substance available in the nature can be utilized as food through insect, therefore their digestive system show diverse variation. This is, though, built on the similar general plan that can be explained as a tube running from the mouth to the anus having three distinct areas:  

  • Foregut - (Stomodaeum)
  • Midgut - (Mesenteron)
  • Hindgut - (Proto Daeum)

Each of such are specialized to carry out various functions. They are separated through valves sphincters that regulate the food passage in them. Aside from the tube, there are accessory glands that secrete materials into the alimentary canal to help digestion.


This part is mainly concerned with the storage and fragmentation of food. This is ectodermal in origin and thus lined internally through a cuticle known. The wall is musculated by the external longitudinal muscle and opposing internal circular muscle. The part is splitted into four areas: The Pharynx, esophagus, Crop and Proventriculus.


This part refers to as the stomach or ventriculus; it is endodermal in the origin and primarily concerned by the enzyme production and absorption of product of digestion.  Cell in the mid-gut are generally columnar. The musculature of this area is poorly build up and opposes the arrangement in the fore-gut. This area might bear the gastric caecum at the anterior and epithelia membranes are permeable therefore, allowing the exchange of digestive enzymes and products.  The lumen might include finger-like projection that raises the surface-area available for the digestion and absorption.

In fluid feeder, this part as well allows rapid expulsion of water from the body.


This is ectodermal in origin, it is lined by INTIMA.  This is meant to conduct undigested food to the exterior through the anus. Musculature is similar to that of the midgut; it is distinguished into two sub-areas (a) An Anterior Intestine builds up of ileum and (b) Posterior Intestine made up rectum and anus.

The ileum is undifferentiated inmost insects however in termites it's stored flagellate (that is, small organism such as euglena) that help in cellulose digestion. The Malpighian tubules occur from the proxima portion of the anterior intensive that is, The pylorus.  The posterior region of the intestine that is, the arms and rectum is enlarged and significant in re-absorption of water, salt and amino acid. It consists of a thin wall in some areas having columnar epithelium.

The length of the alimentary canal differs with the kind of food consumed.

  • Carnivores contain the shortest
  • Herbivores contain the longest
  • Omnivorous contain the moderately sized alimentary canal

Excretory System

Maintenance of water and salt and osmotic level in the haemolymph and the removal of nitrogenous waste is ensured by means of the Malpighian tubules which are the excretory structures insects and are anatomically related by the alimentary canal. They nate minute yellowish tubes from the junction among the midgut and hindgut. 

Malpighian tubules are lengthy, thin and this occurs from the gut close to the junction of the mid and hind gut, this lies freely in the body cavity. The walls are one celled thick and the number differs by insect.

Excretory products like water and salt pass to the Malpighian tubules from the haemolymph. The gland of the rectum as well partake in the excretory system as they eradicate water and salt that gets to them by means of controlled re-absorption.

Respiratory System:

Respiratory ventilation is achieved by means of the trachea system. This is the system of internal tube lined by cuticle on Intina since they are Ectodermal in origin.

Spiral thickening termed as Taenidia provides rigidity to this tube.  The principle tube of this system is the trachea that consists of a diameter of 2­m it opens to outside through spiracles that are guided through valves and are segmentally positioned in pairs. The spiracle differs in size and shape. The trachea system is categorized into 2 on the basis of the spiracles:

a) Open System: In which case the spiracle open directly to the outside and it takes place mainly in the terrestrial insects.

b) Closed System: The spiracle is permanently closed however a network of trachea tube wrist just beneath the integument. This are broadly distributed however the opening is limited to the certain surfaces.

This system is common to parasitic and aquatic insect.

Circulatory System:

The circulatory system of insect is explained as operation which it doesn't comprise of defines blood vessels well-known in no-arthropods. Rather, blood flows via a system of open for different parts of the body. The 'heart' is a pulse tube in the abdominal area, and pumps blood in the forward direction. 

Insects comprise of open circulatory system. The blood occupies body cavity termed as HAEMOCOEL, the mere blood vessel present in the insect is positioned dorsal to the alimentary canal and it expands over the whole length of the organism. 

The vessel includes of a posterior heart overlying the abdomen and an internal aorta. The heart is categorized into series of chamber through valve; each chamber consists of a series of paired slit-like opening termed as OSTIA via which blood drains to the heart, the number of Ostia differs by the insect. The maximum number of Ostia is 12, 3 pairs in the thorax, 9 pairs in the abdomen.  The anterior and posterior lips of the Ostia open to the heart to let the flow of blood to the heart at diastole however prevent the outward flow at systole.

The anterior part of the vessel that is, the dorsal aorta is simple and unperforated tissue. It opens anteriorly and consists of a contractible wall. The values are held back through unicellular thread joined to the inner lining of the heart and this saves the values from turning out inside all through systole. The dorsal aorta lies in the dorsal pericardial sinus all along by the heart. This is cut off from the ventral body cavity having the viscerals or visceral organs through the dorsal diaphragm. The dorsal diaphragm expands from the lower surface of the heart to the lateral position of the tergal plate. Closely related with the heart are the alary muscles that stretche from one portion of the body to other just beneath the heart and stretching out to the limited area of the tergin. This structure thus makes an integral portion of the dorsal diaphragm.

Nervous System:

This makes a complex joining network linking sense organs to effector organs and bringing regarding co-ordinated response. They are building up of many neurons and neuroglia cells.  Neuroglia cells are nutritive and supportive in the function; they as well encourage fast generation and conduction of electrochemical impulse. The central nervous system comprises of two main centre head, one of which is designated as the brain united by a ventral nerve cord. The nerve cord consists of ganglia from which paired segmental nerves originate in the abdomen and thorax.

They take place around the neuron and form a layer of cell termed as Perineurion.  They are transformed to form MYELIN SHEATH or THE SCHWANN CELL. 

Nervous system of an insect is categorized into three, they are:

  • Central Nervous System
  • Peripheral Nervous System
  • Visceral Nervous System

Central Nervous System:

This comprise of three portions: The brain, Suboesophageal ganglion and Ventral nerve cord. The brain is positioned in the head above the esophagus and it is joined to the sub esophageal ganglion through circum mesopagea connectives. As the sub esophageal ganglion is joined to the ventral nerve cord directly. The size of the brain differs however it is bigger in insect by means of complex behavior.

Visceral Nervous System:

This is splitted into esophageal sympathetic, Ventral sympathetic and Caudal sympathetic.

Peripheral Nervous System:

This comprises all nerves mediating among receptors and the central nervous system. It as well joins nerves which link the central nervous system to effector organs like muscles.

Insect Reproduction:

Insects are generally in separate sexes parthenogenesis has been reported in certain species. In these species, there might not be a record of male. Reproductive organs usually comprise of paired GONAD joined to a GONOPHORE through a median duct having a lot of accessory organs. 

Male Reproductive System:

This comprises of a paired testes placed above or beneath the gut in the abdomen.  Each of such comprises of a group of follicle surrounded through peritoneal sheath in which sperms build up posteriorly. They are joined to a median ejaculatory duct through a period vas deferens. The ejaculatory duct opens outside on the penis or an AEDEGUS. 

In a few insects, each vas deferens might be enlarged to form a sac or sperm storage termed as Seminal Vessicle.

Female Reproductive System:

A pair of ovary each comprising of a group of ovaries around 1-200 leads into the oviduct posteriorly and uniting anteriorly in a suspensory ligament joining it to the abdominal wall. Egg moves down from the upper portion of the ovaries join a pair of lateral oviduct and jointed to form a medial oviduct that opens to the genital chamber. It is at times closed to form a vagina that frequently builds up into a Bursa Copular is for the reception of the penis. Connected to the vagina is a sac in which sperms could be stored termed as Spermatheca. A group of different accessory glands might be present to secrete adhesive materials to fasten the egg to some objects or give proficient coverage for the egg. The genital organs of female insects show remarkable likeness.

Growth in Insects:

Due to the presence of exoskeleton, growth in insects likes other arthropod, is attained through ecdysis or moulting, this generally comprises growth in phrases a stadium is the time interval among successive moult and luster is made assure through insects all through a specific stadium.

Moulting in a few insects is generally related with visible transformation or changes in external morphology. This is visible transformation in the external morphology.

Moulting and metamorphosis are controlled through hormone positioned in the head and thorax, the corpora allata and the prothoracic gland.

Corpora allata is accountable for the production of juvenile hormone that maintains the lumative form of an insect throughout early moult.  It stops production at the end of maturity and becomes functional phase after adult phase is reached. Prothoracic gland generates hormone responsible for moulting.

Ecdysis or Moulting:

The word moulting, also termed as sloughing, shedding or for some species, ecdysis, is the way in which the animal routinely casts off a portion of its body (frequently, however not for all time, an outer layer or covering), either at particular times of the year, or at particular points in its life cycle.

Moulting can comprise shedding the epidermis (that is, skin), pelage (that is, feathers, hair, fur and wool) or other external layer. In certain species, other body portions might be shed, for illustration, wings in several insects or the whole exoskeleton in the arthropods.


This is one of the most feature traits of insects, one striking facts of the metamorphosis is that insect are for all time hatching in a condition morphologically dissimilar from that assured through the adult.

In order to reach the latter inster that is, the adult phase they as a result have to pass via changes of form termed as Metamorphosis.

Four obvious phases having varying structures and habit have been recognized in insects, these are: egg, larva, pupa and adult.

Insect Larva:

The larva is a common word to symbolize young one or immature phase of insect between egg and pupa having complete and hyper metamorphosis. The larvae are categorized into four groups on the basis of growth of appendages. Various kinds of Insect Larva are as follows:

a) Protopod Larva: In this eggs comprise little yolk and larvae hatch out from the eggs, as they are still in early phases of embryonic growth. The abdomen is with no segmentation and head and thoracic appendages are rudimentary example: Larvae of the Endoparasitic Hymenoptera.

b) Polypod Larva: This kind of larva has well segmented body and has three pairs of thoracic legs and 2 to 5 pairs of abdominal prologs

c) Oligopod Larva: Such larvae have well segmented body and they bear well growth cephalic appendages and three pairs of thoracic legs. The abdominal appendages (or prolegs) are absent.

d) Apodous Larva: Such larvae don't have either thoracic legs or abdominal prolegs (that is, legless) example: Fruit fly, house fly and honey bee.


Pupa is a non-feeding and inactive phase of insect among the larva and adult having complete metamorphosis. The insect pupae are categorized into two kinds on the basis of mode of emergence of adults from the pupal case.

a) Decticous Pupa: In this kind of pupa, more or less completely formed adult, in the pupal case has relatively powerful sclerotized mandibles through which it comes out from the pupa. This kind of pupa is for all time execrated (free) type example: Lace wing and Scorpion flies.

b) Adecticous Pupa: In this kind of pupa, the adult build up in pupal case, often has reduced and non articulating mandibles that are not employed for escaping from the pupa.

Importance of Pupal phase:

a) Being non feeding phase it ignores or decreases the competition for food.

b) Assists in re-modeling and re-structuring or the body to exploit numerous habitats.

c) Chances of survival of insects are raised by entering in the inactive phases.

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