The collections of Entomology I contain insect orders Coleoptera (Beetles), Thysanoptera (Thrips) and Strepsiptera(Twisted-Wing Parasites).
Beetles are the most species-rich insect order and comprise ca. 400 000 described species. They are easily recognized by their stiffened forewings (elytra). When folded up elytra protect the delicate underlying hindwings from mechanical damage. Therefore, beetles can colonize habitats such as wood or water not open to other winged insects.
Thrips comprise about 5300 minuscule species rarely exceeding 2 mm. Members of this order are recognized by a fringe of hairs on their wings. Thrips feed on fungi, higher plants, spores, pollen or insects. They can cause considerable economic damage by sucking on crops and ornamental plants, forming galls or transmitting plant diseases.
Twisted-Wing Parasites form a small insect order of about 530 described species worldwide. Males can be recognized by their hindwings that can be folded like a fan and by reduced forewings. The females remain larva-like throughout their lives and develop as parasites within the abdomens of other insects such as bees and grasshoppers.