Miscellaneous Insect Order Section

The Miscellaneous Insect Order section is one of the oldest sections at ZSI headquarters and currently deals with taxonomic studies on several orders of insects like Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies), Trichoptera (Caddisflies), Neuroptera (Lacewings), Ephemeroptera (Mayflies), Psocoptera (Booklice), Embioptera (Webspinners), Plecoptera (Stoneflies), Megaloptera (alderflies, dobsonflies, and fishflies, and Mecoptera (Scorpion flies). Insect groups like Ephemroptera, Plecoptera and Trichoptera (EPT) are known to be reliable biological indicators in assessing freshwater quality and environmental health as many of these insects are sensitive to water pollution, changes in the habitats, temperature variations and other climatic changes. The official registration of specimens of MIO section started in 1973.The section holds some very old collections made by eminent scientists like H.S.  Pruthi and H.A. Rao and others dating back to as early as 1933.Some very old collections are from outside India, including countries like Myanmar, Germany, Canada, USA, Russia, Croatia and Indonesia. The MIO section has nearly 711 species under 227 genera belonging to 68 families in the sectional holdings and holds a total of 17846 specimens, of which 14,400 are identified and registered. So far more than 25 programmes have been handled by the scientists of MIO section. Presently the section is participating in 14 Annual Programmes of Research and has 01 externally funded project (DST-SERB). Broadening the scope of work of the section further, taxonomic and bioecological studies have been initiated recently on insect pollinators and also parasitic Hymenoptera.