Common Names

Common names ("vernacular names") for insects can help make things seems easier when you first start out, but their use is not recommended for the following reasons:

  • They are inconsistent between countries and cultures
  • They may be misleading due to use of inaccurate descriptions in the venracular names
  • The same vernauclar name may apply to several different species
  • They are liable to change

The use of scientific names prevents confusion as they are the same throughout the world. Although scientific names may change, this will only be as a result of work done in trying to understand the taxonomy of the order, and any names changes are well-defined and published, so can be tracked.

We include vernacular names on this website because:

  • Many people use search engines to search for vernacular ("common") names. Providing them on the site makes it more likely that people will reach this resource, where they can learn the scientific names and more about the species
  • Seeing the confusion they can cause (such as the same common name for several different species) may encourage people to use the scientific names instead
  • For completeness: we want this to be a comprehensive resource for all phasmid enthusiasts.
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