Thymus is a genus of hymenopteran insects of the family Eulophidae.
Hymenoptera is a large order of insects, comprising the sawflies, wasps, bees, and ants. Over 150,000 living species of Hymenoptera have been described, in addition to over 2,000 extinct ones.
Insects or Insecta are hexapod invertebrates and the largest group within the arthropod phylum. Definitions and circumscriptions vary; usually, insects comprise a class within the Arthropoda. As used here, the term Insecta is synonymous with Ectognatha. Insects have a chitinous exoskeleton, a three-part body, three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes and one pair of antennae. Insects are the most diverse group of animals; they include more than a million described species and represent more than half of all known living organisms. The total number of extant species is estimated at between six and ten million; potentially over 90% of the animal life forms on Earth are insects. Insects may be found in nearly all environments, although only a small number of species reside in the oceans, which are dominated by another arthropod group, crustaceans.
The Eulophidae are a large family of hymenopteran insects, with over 4,300 described species in some 300 genera. The family includes the genus Elasmus, which used to be treated as a separate family, "Elasmidae", and is now treated as a subfamily of Eulophidae. These minute insects are challenging to study, as they deteriorate rapidly after death unless extreme care is taken, making identification of most museum specimens difficult. The larvae of a very few species feed on plants, but the majority are primary parasitoids on a huge range of arthropods at all stages of development. They are exceptional in that they are one of two hymenopteran families with some species that are known to parasitize Thysanoptera. Eulophids are found throughout the world in virtually all habitats.
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