2 pairs of wings. The forewings are narrower than the hind wings and hardened or leathery at the base. They are held roof-like overlapping the abdomen at rest. The hind wing is membranous and held folded fan-like under the forewings when at rest
Damselflies and dragonflies are very similar but can be separated by looking at their wings. In dragonflies the hind wings are slightly broader than the forewings and in damselflies both wings are more or less similar size. Wings are held horizontally to the body in dragonflies and vertically in damselflies when at rest.
The praying mantis is named for its prominent front legs, which are bent and held together at an angle that suggests the position of prayer. The larger group of these insects is more properly called the praying mantids. Mantis refers to the genus mantis, to which only some praying mantids belong.
The larvae of lacewings, many of which are commonly known as antlions, appear very different from the adults and vary greatly in shape and size depending on the species. The larvae are grub-like with large jaws projecting from the front of the head, which are used to seize their prey.
As its name suggests, the stick insect resembles the twigs among which it lives, providing it with one of the most efficient natural camouflages on Earth. It and the equally inconspicuous leaf insect comprise the Phasmida order, of which there are approximately 3,000 species.
These fast running insects have become common inhabitants of manmade dwellings and are often found in dark sheltered areas about the home. Silverfish are usually less than 20 millimetres in length and silvery-grey in colour. They appear similar to bristletails (Archaeognatha) but can be distinguished by the following features:
Snakeflies are so-called because of their elongated prothorax (the bit behind the head) which makes them look a little snake-like. There are up to 200 species, though only a handful in the UK and Europe. After the adult female lays eggs in the bark of trees, the resulting larvae take up to 2 years to develop, changing their skins over a dozen times in the process.