The cohort Polyneoptera[1][2] is probably the most appropriate taxonomic ranking for commonly-used terms such as Orthopteroid insects: namely the orders similar to the Orthoptera (grasshoppers, crickets, etc.). They are all winged insects (Pterygota), derived from ancestors that evolved to fold their wings (Neoptera) and possess biting mouthparts, but undergo little or no metamorphosis.

Some representatives
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Subclass: Pterygota
Branch: Metapterygota
Infraclass: Neoptera
Cohort: Polyneoptera
Martynov, 1938

Gryllones, Orthoptères, Orthopteroid Orders, Orthopteroidea, Paurometabola, Polyneopterata, Polyorthoptera, Polyplecoptera, Dermapterida, Plecopterida, Plecopterodea, Mystroptera

Superorders and orders

The Orthoptera Species File lists the following:[3]

Superorder Dictyoptera

Superorder Orthopterida

  • †Caloneurodea
  • †Geraroptera
  • Orthoptera – 2 extant suborders:
    • Caelifera – grasshoppers, groundhoppers, pygmy mole-crickets
    • Ensifera – crickets, mole-crickets, katydids or bush crickets, camel crickets, wetas, etc.
    • Titanoptera - from the Triassic period.
  • order Incertae sedis
    • family †Cacurgidae Handlirsch, 1911
    • family †Chresmodidae Haase, 1890
    • family †Permostridulidae Béthoux, Nel, Lapeyrie & Gand, 2003
    • family †Protophasmatidae Brongniart, 1885
      • genus †Chenxiella Liu, Ren & Prokop, 2009
      • genus †Lobeatta Béthoux, 2005
      • genus †Nectoptilus Béthoux, 2005
      • genus †Sinopteron Prokop & Ren, 2007

Synonyms include: Archaeorthoptera, Gryllidea, Orthopterodea, Orthopterodida, Orthopteroidea, Panorthoptera

Superorder †Perlidea (synonym Plecopteroidea)

  • †Cnemidolestida

Superorder not placed


  1. ^ Martynov (1938) Tr. Paleont. Inst. Akad. Nauk, SSSR 7(4): 70.
  2. ^ Delclos, Nel, Azar, Bechly, Dunlop, Engel, Heads (2008) Neues Jahrbuch fuer Geologie und Palaeontologie Abhandlungen 247(3): 353-381.
  3. ^ Orthoptera Species File (Version 5.0/5.0)

External Links


Amphiesmenoptera is an insect superorder, established by S. G. Kiriakoff, but often credited to Willi Hennig in his revision of insect taxonomy for two sister orders: Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) and Trichoptera (caddisflies). In 2017, a third fossil order was added to the group, the Tarachoptera.Trichoptera and Lepidoptera share a number of derived characters (synapomorphies) which demonstrate their common descent:

Females, rather than males, are heterogametic (i.e. their sex chromosomes differ).

Dense setae are present in the wings (modified into scales in Lepidoptera).

There is a particular venation pattern on the forewings (the double-looped anal veins).

Larvae have mouth structures and glands to make and manipulate silk.Thus these two extant orders are sisters, with Tarachoptera basal to both groups. Amphiesmenoptera probably evolved in the Jurassic. Lepidoptera differ from the Trichoptera in several features, including wing venation, form of the scales on the wings, loss of the cerci, loss of an ocellus, and changes to the legs.Amphiesmenoptera are thought to be the sister group of Antliophora, a proposed superorder comprising Diptera (flies), Siphonaptera (fleas) and Mecoptera (scorpionflies). Together, Amphiesmenoptera and Antliophora compose the group Mecopterida.


Archodonata is an extinct order of palaeozoic paleopterous insects, sometimes included in Odonata.


Chresmoda is an extinct genus of insects within the family Chresmodidae.


Chresmodidae is an extinct family of insects within the superorder Polyneoptera.


The Dicondylia are a taxonomic group (taxon) that includes all insects except the jumping bristletails (Archaeognatha). Dicondylia have a mandible attached with two hinges to the head capsule (dicondyl), in contrast to the original mandible with a single ball joint (monocondyl).


Dictyoptera (from Greek δίκτυον diktyon "net" and πτερόν pteron "wing") is an insect superorder that includes two extant orders of polyneopterous insects: the order Blattodea (termites and cockroaches together) and the order Mantodea (mantises), along with one extinct order, the Alienoptera. While all modern Dictyoptera have short ovipositors, the oldest fossils of Dictyoptera have long ovipositors, much like members of the Orthoptera.


Endopterygota (from Ancient Greek endon “inner” + pterón, “wing” + New Latin -ota “having”), also known as Holometabola, is a superorder of insects within the infraclass Neoptera that go through distinctive larval, pupal, and adult stages. They undergo a radical metamorphosis, with the larval and adult stages differing considerably in their structure and behaviour. This is called holometabolism, or complete metamorphism.

The Endopterygota are among the most diverse insect superorders, with over 1 million living species divided between 11 orders, containing insects such as butterflies, flies, fleas, bees, ants, and beetles.They are distinguished from the Exopterygota (or Hemipterodea) by the way in which their wings develop. Endopterygota (meaning literally "internal winged forms") develop wings inside the body and undergo an elaborate metamorphosis involving a pupal stage. Exopterygota ("external winged forms") develop wings on the outside their bodies and do not go through a pupal stage. The latter trait is plesiomorphic, however, and not exclusively found in the exopterygotes, but also in groups such as Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies), which are not Neoptera, but more basal among insects.

The earliest endopterygote fossils date from the Carboniferous.


Eumetabola is an unranked category of Neoptera. Two large unities known as the Paurometabola and Eumetabola are probably from the adelphotaxa of the Neoptera after exclusion of the Plecoptera. The monophyly of these unities appears to be weakly justified.


Hymenopodidae is a family of the order Mantodea (mantises), which contains six subfamilies. Some of the species in this family mimic flowers and are found camouflaged among them; these are called Flower Mantises. The coloration is aggressive mimicry, luring prey to approach close enough to be seized and eaten.


Myrmeleontoidea is a lacewing superfamily in the suborder Myrmeleontiformia.


Neoptera is a classification group that includes most orders of the winged insects, specifically those that can flex their wings over their abdomens. This is in contrast with the more basal orders of winged insects (the "Palaeoptera" assemblage), which are unable to flex their wings in this way.


The Odonatoptera are a superorder (sometimes treated as an order) of ancient winged insects, placed in the Palaeoptera which probably form a paraphyletic group however. The dragonflies and damselflies are the only living members of this group, which was far more diverse in the late Paleozoic and contained gigantic species, including the griffinflies (colloquially called "giant dragonflies", although they were not dragonflies in the strict sense) of the order Protodonata. This lineage dates back at least to the Bashkirian, not quite 320 million years ago.


The Orthopterida is a superorder of the Polyneoptera that represents the extant orders Orthoptera (grasshoppers, crickets, and katydids), and Phasmatodea (stick insects and leaf insects). The Orthopterida also includes the extinct orders Titanoptera and Caloneurodea. There is general consensus of monophyly in this superorder, based on reduction of the second valvulae, an ovipositor derived from the gonoplac, and an enlarged precostal region on the forewing.

The two other superorders of the Polyneoptera are the Plecopterida, which represents the orders Plecoptera (stoneflies), Emboidea (Embioptera/Embiidina; webspinners), and Zoraptera (angel insects), and the Dictyoptera, which represents Blattodea (cockroaches & termites), and Mantodea (mantids). Two other orders, the Notoptera (ice-crawlers and gladiators) and Dermaptera (earwigs) are also placed in the Polyneoptera but outside the superorders discussed above.


Orthopteroids are insects which historically would have been included in the order Orthoptera and now may be placed in the Polyneoptera. When Carl Linnaeus started applying binomial names to animals in the 10th edition of his Systema Naturae in 1758, there were few animals included in the scheme, and consequently few groups. As more and more new species were discovered and differences recognised, the original groups proposed by Linnaeus were split up.

Originally all orthopteroid insects were in the genus Gryllus, this genus now contains a group of closely related crickets. In the scheme used by Linnaeus the genus contained crickets, grasshoppers, locusts, katydids / bush crickets (Tettigoniidae), stick insects, and praying mantises. These groups, along with the cockroaches, which Linnaeus did treat differently, are all orthopteroid insects. The newly discovered order Mantophasmatodea is also an orthopteroid order.


The name Palaeoptera has been traditionally applied to those ancestral groups of winged insects (most of them extinct) that lacked the ability to fold the wings back over the abdomen as characterizes the Neoptera. The Diaphanopterodea, which are palaeopteran insects, had independently and uniquely evolved a different wing-folding mechanism. Both mayflies and dragonflies lack any of the smell centers in their brain found in Neoptera.


Panorpida or Mecopterida is a proposed superorder of Endopterygota. The conjectured monophyly of the Panorpida is historically based on morphological evidence, namely the reduction or loss of the ovipositor and several internal characteristics, including a muscle connecting a pleuron and the first axillary sclerite at the base of the wing, various features of the larval maxilla and labium, and basal fusion of CuP and A1 veins in the hind wings. The monophyly of the Panorpida is also supported by recent molecular data.


Paraneoptera is a monophyletic superorder of insects which includes four orders, the bark lice, true lice, thrips, and hemipterans, the true bugs. The mouthparts of the Paraneoptera reflect diverse feeding habits. Basal groups are microbial surface feeders, whereas more advanced groups feed on plant or animal fluids.


Protodiptera is an extinct order of insects containing the two genera Permotipula and Permila.


Psocodea is a taxonomic group of insects comprising the bark lice, book lice and true lice. It was formerly considered a superorder, but is now generally considered by entomologists as an order. Despite the greatly differing appearance of lice, they are believed to have evolved from within the former order "Psocoptera", which contained the bark lice and book lice. Psocodea contains around 11,000 species, divided among seven suborders.


This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.