Arthropods, meaning jointed feet, are the largest phylum in the animal kingdom and includes insects, crustaceans and arachnids. Of these insects make up over eighty percent. Arthropods have have a hard exoskeleton and segmented bodies.

Insects are characterized by having three body segments, head thorax and abdomen, and three pairs of jointed legs. They are the most prolific creatures on earth, found in the widest range of habitats form the sea to the mountains. It is said that the only two animal species that will survive a nuclear holocaust are the termite and the cockroach

Arachnids include spiders and scorpions and have two body segments, cephlathorax and abdomen, and have four pairs of legs.

Other arthropods include millipedes, centipedes and crustaceans.

For the sake of the guide we have divided the arthropods up into two groups – insects and other arthropods – and in time we will divide them up in to their classes.