The Zoraptera a a very small order of insects, there are about 30 known species. They are also small in size being less than 3 mm long. They are hemimetabolous, have biting mouthparts, very short, 1 segmented cerci, and 9 segmented antennae. They are generally found under bark or in humus and leaf-litter. They are unsusual in that each species comes in 2 different forms, one of which is 'alate' (has wings) and the other is 'apterous', i.e. doesn't have wings. The apterous form is the more common, generally white in color and has no compound eyes or ocelli, whereas the alate forms have both compound eyes and ocelli, and are more pigmented. Though less than 3 mm long an alate Zorapteran can have a total wingspan of about 7mm. Another interesting thing is that like their relatives the Termites (Isoptera) they can voluntarily shed their wings. Though little is known about the biology of Zorapterans it is known that 2 forms of nymphs occurr that equate with the 2 different life-forms. They are usually found in rotting timber and or sawdust, well composted leaf-litter and Termites nests. They feed on fungal spores and smaller arthropods. The name Zoraptera comes from the Greek words "zor" meaning pure and "aptera" meaning wingless (they were named before the winged forms were discovered).
Courtship Feeding and Repeated Mating in Zorotypus barberi (Insecta,
By Choe J. C.
Animal Behaviour, 1995, Vol.49, No.6, pp.1511-1520
A new insect order in French Guiana: The Zoraptera.
Un nouvel ordre d'insectes en Guyane francaise: Les Zorapteres.
ENTOMOLOGISTE 1995 vol. 51, no. 1, pp. 37-38
The order Zoraptera (Insecta) from Christmas Island, Indian Ocean.
INVERTEBR. TAXON. 1995 vol. 9, no. 2, pp. 243-246
Sexual Selection and Mating System in Zorotypus gurneyi Choe
(Insecta, Zoraptera) .2. Determinants and dynamics of dominance
Choe J. C.
Behavioral ecology and Sociobiology, 1994, Vol.34, No.4, pp.233-237
Sexual selection and mating system in Zorotypus gurneyi Choe
(Insecta, Zoraptera) .1. Dominance hierarchy and mating success
Choe J. C.
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 1994, Vol.34, No.2, pp.87-93
Zoraptera wing structures - evidence for new genera and relationship
with the blattoid orders (Insecta, Blattoneoptera)
Kukalovapeck J. and Peck S.B.
Systematic Entomology, 1993, Vol.18, No.4, pp.333-350
Zorotypus gurneyi, new species, from Panama and redescription of
Zorotypus barberi Gurney (Zoraptera, Zorotypidae)
Choe J. C.
Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 1989, vol.82, no.2, pp.149-155
Zorotypus palaeus, new species, a fossil Zoraptera (insecta) in
Poinar G. O.
Journal of the New York Entomological Society, 1988, vol.96, no.3, pp.253-259
A new Kansas record for Zoraptera.
Urrelo R., Rice M. E. and Blocker H. D.
Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society, 1987, vol.60, no.1, p.153
Grooming behavior in Embioptera and Zoraptera (Insecta).
Valentine B. D.
Ohio Journal of Science, 1986, vol.86, no.4, pp.150-152
Biological observations on Zorotypus hubbardi Caudell (Zoraptera)
Entomol. News, 1978 Vol. 89(9-10), 217-223
Notes on Neotropical Zoraptera, with descriptions of two new species.
Syst. Entomol., 1978 Vol. 3(4), 361-370
A synopsis of the order Zoraptera with notes on the biology of Zorotypus hubbardi Caudell.
Proc. Ent. Soc. Wash., 1938. 40: 57-87.
Evidences of relationship indicated by the venation of the forewings of certain insects with special reference
to the Hemiptera-Homoptera.
Crampton, G. C.
Psyche, 1922. 29: 23-41.
Zoraptera not an apterous order.
Caudell, A. N.
Proc. Entomol. Soc. Wash.,1920. 22: 84-97.
Some anatomical details of the remarkable winged Zorapteron, Zorotypus hubbardi Caudell with
notes on its relationships.
Crampton, G. C.
Proc. Ent. Soc. Washington, 1920. 22: 98-106.