Talk:Evolution of insects

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I see this was split out from insect. Well it really needs to cite its sources now. --Cyde Weys 16:46, 3 February 2006 (UTC)

I agree but I'll first have to figure out which they are. Jimp 11:32, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

How do you report probable copyright violation/plagiarism? The section on evolution seems to have lifted text nearly word-for-word from Roger Perkin's online fossil museum. For example, Perkins writes "Insect evolution is characterized by rapid adaptation with selective pressures exerted by environment. Rapid adaptation is furthered by their high fecundity." The Wikipedia paragraph merges them into one sentence using a ", with" without any other changes. Alexfiles 16:17, 4 March 2012 (UTC)

  • Well, of course copyrighted material needs to be cut out or re-written: but first, try to be sure which way the plagiarism is going. If you have to cut it out, you might want to make notes here about the points that need to be re-covered. I agree, it sounds as if it was written in a very discursive, non-objective style which is not home-grown Wikipedi! --Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)
    • It seems likely that it was taken verbatim from the site, as that site counts as its citation - seems a bit circular to me. Probably should be significantly researched or at least reworded. Rolf Schmidt (talk) 04:31, 14 January 2013 (UTC)
      • Several sections of the text were taken verbatim from, not just the selective pressure section. Most notably, the entire third paragraph of the original website's information was copy-pasted in the introduction. --Thomas.2662 (talk)


Like many articles dealing with scientific topics, this one needs to be rerwritten for the non-expert. There's so much jargon and specialized terminology used with no explanation offered at all that unless you're already versed on the topic, it's unreadable. I'd rewrite it myself, but I'm not sure I know what the article is trying to say. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) .

I fully agree with the comment above. I found several sections of this article nearly incomprehensible. It would be lovely if someone who did understand it could rewrite it. OneVeryBadMan 19:04, 5 April 2006 (UTC)
      • I agree that this article is extremely unclear, but for different reasons. It is not technical terms that make it difficult, but, rather, it is terrible grammar and sentence structure throughout. This article really just need a very thorough proofreading and rewording. It also, as mentioned above, needs to cite sources. Perhaps the Wikipedia tags for an article needing to cite sources and an article needing tone/grammar/clarity improvements should be added? Emtilt 23:39, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
        • Then how about starting? Take one word or phrase and fix it! Any one can change "has the capability to" to "can" as they pass through. --Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)

I have to say that the article is way, way over the head of the non-specialist! Cut the jargon, and cut the detail of specialisation of form or anatomical features - or give some length to the main principles and phases which produced insects, in terms accessible to the non-specialist. Please! Cheuchter (talk) 12:22, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

Wings from gills[edit]

According to a couple of articles, wings evolved from gills eons ago:

"My research shows that modern stoneflies may have retained intermediate forms of flight that date back to an evolutionary transition from gills to wings, and therefore perhaps they have retained other traits related to a transition in gas exchange physiology. This line of thinking led me to suggest to Thorsten Burmester, an expert on arthropod gas exchange proteins, that he should check to see if stoneflies have hemocyanin in their blood. This was a pretty far out idea, since blood-based gas exchange is what other arthropods use (including aquatic ones) but was previously thought to be completely absent in insects, which deliver air directly to their tissues via tracheae. Burmester found that stoneflies do indeed have hemocyanin in their blood (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 101: 871-874) that reversibly binds oxygen, and it appears that no other pterygote insects possess this trait. In summary, the developmental evidence that you have presented for a gills-to-wings transition is supported by both a set of mechanically intermediate forms of winged locomotion in stoneflies and molecular evidence that a simultaneous transition occurred in gas exchange physiology." [1]

My own comment would be that while the fronterior gills gradually evolved into wings, the other gill pairs could still hold on to more conventional functions.

"In insects, we have an interesting origin explanation for wings: they're modified gills. It makes sense. For gills, you want to have an increased surface area for gas exchange, and you want them exposed to the external environment. Most animals evolved sophisticated gills with convoluted surfaces and tucked them away in a protective chamber, with a mechanism to pump water over them, but others took a simpler path. Mayflies, for instance, have flat vanes on each segment in the larval stage as respiratory surfaces—they even look like wings. Arthropods evolved a recipe for flat, cuticular structures to serve as gills, and perhaps one explanation for the evolution of wings is that they simply re-evoked that recipe as adults, used it for gliding, and then expanded and elaborated on the formula incrementally to generate flapping, powered flight. What it implies in the evolution of the arthropods is that the wings of pterygote insects are derived from epipod gills, or alternatively, have coopted a molecular pathway that first arose in epipods. While most of the terrestrial arthropods have been simplifying their limbs, the winged insects retained one element that gave them the power of flight." [2] (talk) 05:36, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

  • The whole section about wings from gills is written in a partisan manner instead of presenting alternative theories or evidence pro and con. It think this might be the section that got the "weasel words" flag slapped on this article. --Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)

Orphaned references in Phylogeny of insects[edit]

I check pages listed in Category:Pages with incorrect ref formatting to try to fix reference errors. One of the things I do is look for content for orphaned references in wikilinked articles. I have found content for some of Phylogeny of insects's orphans, the problem is that I found more than one version. I can't determine which (if any) is correct for this article, so I am asking for a sentient editor to look it over and copy the correct ref content into this article.

Reference named "number":

  • From Grylloblattidae: Terry L. Erwin (1997). "Biodiversity at its utmost: tropical forest beetles". In Marjorie L. Reaka-Kudla, Don E. Wilson & Edward O. Wilson. Biodiversity II. Washington, D.C.: Joseph Henry Press. pp. 27–40. ISBN 9780309055840. 
  • From Insect: Erwin, Terry L. (1997). Biodiversity at its utmost: Tropical Forest Beetles. pp. 27–40.  In: Reaka-Kudla, M. L., D. E. Wilson & E. O. Wilson (eds.). Biodiversity II. Joseph Henry Press, Washington, D.C. 

I apologize if any of the above are effectively identical; I am just a simple computer program, so I can't determine whether minor differences are significant or not. AnomieBOT 01:47, 30 April 2011 (UTC)

  • Perhaps someone could check back in the article on Insects to see if some of the dubious references were copied from there? Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)

Paleoentomology shouldn't be within Phylogeny of Insects[edit]

I have been finding a lot of dead links attached to the UK spelling Palaeoentomology; if I change them to the US spelling Paleoentomology, that is live-linked, but it links to 'Phylogeny of Insects'

I don't think anyone can argue that paleoentomology is a subset of Phylogeny of Insects, and I can't think why it has been combined. I don't necessarily have the wiki-ability to split it out but it needs to be done. If not its own section, it could be within Paleontology article, but it is misplaced and lost here Coleopterist (talk) 01:57, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

  • Is there a palaeoetomologist in the house? Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)

Discussion on title of taxon evolution pages[edit]

Hi, There is a thread here you may be interested in, about a consistent naming for articles dealing with evolution of taxa. Thanks! --Cyclopiatalk 17:08, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Strudiella devonica[edit]

I added a paragraph for the only complete insect known from the Late Devonian. I think it deserves its own article but to do it justice we need someone with access to full Nature articles and preferably permission to post an image. Is there a palaeontologist in the house?

Meanwhile I'll look for the flagged "weasel-worded phrase from 2009" and try to edit it out. Monado (talk) 22:37, 22 December 2012 (UTC)

  • Didn't find the template but did find some special pleading. I don't have any more time to edit out the non-neutral language. Is there an editor in the house? Monado (talk) 23:10, 22 December 2012 (UTC)
    • I think the insect's name should link to its own Wikipedia page, or at least a citation to an article about its discovery until that page is created. --Thomas.2662 (talk)


The caption for the fossil picture says "Fossil of a grasshopper (or other Orthopteran). " It looks more like a cricket than a grasshopper to me, although I'm no expert. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Derwos (talkcontribs) 03:38, 10 December 2013 (UTC)

Phylogenetic tree changed[edit]

There is a small mistake in the phylogenetic tree. The Coleoptera and Hymenoptera must be swapped. The insect phylogenetic tree is changed in 2006. The phylogenetic tree shown now is indeed the phylogenetic tree as shown in the paper of Evans from 2003, but when looking at the papers written by Ishiwata et al from 2003, I again conclude that Coleoptera and Hymenoptera should change places. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:49, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Importance of Permian Period[edit]

The article mentions that the Permian period was short and important, but does so without a citation. I'll keep an eye out for a primary source to cite, but if anybody else has spotted one please add it as a citation. --Thomas.2662 (talk)

Date of origin[edit]

Article dates this as Devonian (citation required), but a recent analysis PubMed 25378627 places this earlier in the Ordovician (~479 million years ago). Cmungall (talk) 00:24, 17 November 2014 (UTC)