Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
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See Moth submissions from National Moth Week 2023

Photos of insects and people from the 2022 BugGuide gathering in New Mexico, July 20-24

Photos of insects and people from the Spring 2021 gathering in Louisiana, April 28-May 2

Photos of insects and people from the 2019 gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Photos of insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Previous events


larva, larvae, larval

Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
No Taxon (Glossary)
No Taxon (L)
No Taxon larva, larvae, larval
Explanation of Names
From Latin, larva a mask, a ghost.
larva noun, plural larvae, adjective larval - An insect after issuing from the egg; in particular the second stage of an insect with complete metamorphosis. The term caterpillar is generally applied to the larvae of butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera). The larval stage is when the insect grows most in size--the growth is interrupted by molts (ecdysis) of the integument, and each stage between molts is called an instar.

The immature stages of an insect with simple metamorphosis are called nymphs. (If aquatic, these are called naiads.)
See Also
Stages of insect with complete metamorphosis
egg (embryo)
imago (adult)

Immature stages of insects
Print References
Gordh, A Dictionary of Entomology, p. 510 (1)
Works Cited
1.A Dictionary of Entomology
George Gordh, David H. Headrick. 2003. CABI Publishing.