Thorax (insect anatomy)

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The thorax is the midsection (tagma) of the insect body. It holds the head, legs, wings and abdomen. It is also called mesosoma in other arthropods.

It is formed by the prothorax, mesothorax and metathorax and comprises the scutellum; the cervix, a membrane that separates the head from the thorax; and the pleuron, a lateral sclerite of the thorax.

In dragonflies and damselflies the mesothorax and metathorax are fused together to form the synthorax.[1][2]

In some insect pupae, like the mosquitoes', the head and thorax can be fused in a cephalothorax.

Members of suborder Apocrita (wasps, ants and bees) in the order Hymenoptera have the first segment of the abdomen fused with the thorax, which is called the propodeum.

In most flying insects, the thorax allows for the use of asynchronous muscles.

The thorax in various types of insect
  In Diptera
  In Formicidae


  1. ^ Theischinger, Günther; Hawking, John (2006). The Complete Field Guide to Dragonflies of Australia. Collingwood Vic.: CSIRO Publishing. p. 303. ISBN 978 0 64309 073 6.
  2. ^ Tillyard, R. J. (1917). The Biology of Dragonflies (PDF). Cambridge University Press. p. 20. Archived (PDF) from the original on July 3, 2017.