Hemiptera means "half wing" and refers to the fact that part of the first pair of wings is toughened and hard, while the rest of the first pair and the second pair are membranous.
True bugs also have modified piercing and sucking mouthparts; some suck plant juices and are plant pests, while others can bite painfully. Some examples of true bugs are: Assassin bugs, milkweed bugs, water striders, and water bugs.
Development is gradual through an incomplete metamorphosis with a number of nymphal stages before the reproductively mature adult stage is reached.
Most bugs are terrestrial (flyers), but many are aquatic (e.g., various water bugs).
Although bugs vary greatly in size, color, and physical appearance, they all have piercing-sucking mouthparts in the form of a jointed beak. Most species suck plant juices (e.g., the squash bug and chinch bug); however, some suck the blood of other insects and spiders (e.g., the assassin bug and backswimmer). Others, such as the bedbug, feed on people and other animals. Many of these insects characteristically secrete defensive substances (e.g., the stinkbug).
The true bugs are classified in the phylum Arthropoda,
class Insecta, order Hemiptera.