As in other aquatic orders, our collection of Plecoptera is very good due to work by Needham, Claasen, and others. There are 3 drawers of pinned specimens, 5436 vials of alcohol-preserved specimens of both adults and nymphs, and 1246 microscope slide mounts of adult and immature structures. We have 114 primary types, and 156 secondary types. All non-type material stored on slides has been databased.

Peter W. Claassen and James G. Needham Plecoptera Slide Collection

The Cornell University Insect Collection contains the important Plecoptera collections of Peter W. Claassen and James G. Needham. This page provides access to a database of the slide mounted specimens. Both adult and immature specimens were prepared and include mounts of whole specimens, terminalia and gonads, antennae, cerci, mouth parts, legs, and disarticulated body sclerites. The collection is comprised primarily of North American species, with a minor component of South American, Asian (primarily Himalayan), and Palearctic specimens.

The database contains the following information: family, genus, species, author, locality, date of collection, collector, number of slides, parts mounted on slide, and remarks. The collection is arranged phylogenetically by family and within family alphabetically by genus. The arrangement of genera into families has undergone extensive revision since the time of Claassen and Needham, especially the families Perlidae, Chloroperlidae, and Perlodidae. All specimens are cross referenced in the database by the original generic and species name assigned by Needham and Claassen, and all known synonymies using Joel Hallan’s Plecoptera list. The specimens are arranged in the collection by the most recent name.

The easiest way to search for specific species is by species-name. Please be aware that misspellings might occur because the handwritten labels are sometimes difficult to interpret and some names could not be found anywhere in the literature. An attempt was made to cross reference each species for all synonymies. The notes field provides a complete list of the synonymies.


There are 9 drawers of determined and 2 drawers of undetermined Dermaptera, and no types. The Dermaptera collection contains 29 determined species and is mostly Nearctic taxa. They were curated by Brandon Woo.


We have 4 drawers and 24 vials of Embioptera.


Zoraptera are poorly represented in our collection.


The collection of Orthoptera is moderate in size, but global in scope. A total of 188 drawers house the pinned collection, including both determined and undetermined material. Especially strong are Acrididae (76 drawers), Tettigoniidae (48 drawers), and Gryllidae (17 drawers). The identified material represents at least 708 species, with emphasis on the Nearctic and Neotropical fauna but with good showings from other regions. There is 1 holotype and 42 secondary types. The Acrididae holdings were curated by Dr. Hojun Song. The entire Orthoptera collection was curated by Brandon Woo.


The walkingstick collection focuses mainly on Neotropical and Nearctic taxa (34 determined species total), and amounts to 20 drawers. There are 6 drawers of undetermined material and 1 type. They were curated by Brandon Woo.


We have very few Grylloblattodea.


Mantophasmatodea, the most recently described insect order, is poorly represented in our collection.


The mantid collection focuses mainly on Nearctic and Neotropical taxa (65 determined species total), and amounts to 33 drawers. There are 5 drawers of undetermined material, and no types. The collection was curated by Mr. Kris Anderson and Brandon Woo.

Blattodea (including Isoptera)

The roach and termite collection, with 127 determined species, focuses mainly on Nearctic and Neotropical taxa, and amounts to 21 drawers. There are 6 drawers of undetermined material, and 8 types. The roach collection benefited from curation by Mr. Erich Tilgner and Brandon Woo.

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