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43 Examples of Animals that Are Invertebrates (A to Z List with Pictures)

examples of invertebrates

Invertebrates are animals that don’t have a backbone. Some invertebrates you might be familiar with include octopuses, jellyfish, and squid.

It’s a type of animal that does not have or no longer has a backbone. This means they are soft-bodied, like jellyfish for example.

There are many different types of invertebrates, but some examples include mollusks, crustaceans, and insects. In this blog post, we will talk about animals that are invertebrates.

Examples of Animals that Are Invertebrates

There are many different types of invertebrates, each with its own unique characteristics. For example, there are crustaceans that include crabs and lobsters.

The phyla group includes:

  • Arthropods (insects, arachnids, crustaceans, and myriapods)
  • Mollusks (chitons, snail, bivalves, squids, and octopuses)
  • Annelids (earthworms and leeches)
  • Cnidarians (hydras, jellyfishes, sea anemones, and corals)
  • Echinoderms (starfish, sea urchin, sea cucumber)
  • Poriferous (sponges)
  • Platyhelminthes (flatworms, tapeworms)

1. Anemone

Anemone
Scientific NameAnemone
Type of AnimalActiniaria
RangeThroughout the world’s oceans
DietCarnivore

Anemones are found in many different places, such as the sea and oceans. They eat zooplankton, crabs, and fish! Anemones often live on rocks or coral reefs because they need a hard surface to attach themselves to so that they do not float away with the current.

2. Ant

Scientific NameFormicidae
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

Ants live in a wide variety of habitats, from tropical forests to deserts. Ants are found on every continent except Antarctica and there are more than 12,000 species worldwide. Most ant colonies consist mostly of sterile wingless females forming castes of specialized workers (small ants), soldiers (medium-sized ants), and sometimes drones (males).

3. Bee

bee
Scientific NameAnthophila
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

Invertebrates are animals that do not have a backbone. One type of invertebrate is an insect, which includes bees.

Bee’s spend much of their time collecting food from flowers or other plants to take back to their hive in order to eat. When they are collecting food, bees can visit up to 100 flowers per day!

4. Beetle

water beetles
Scientific NameColeoptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

People who like to explore the outdoors will tell you that there is a large variety of invertebrates. These animals can be found in many different places such as forests, grasslands, and even your own backyard! Insects are probably one of the most common types of invertebrate people come across. Beetles fit into this category too!

5. Butterfly

butterfly
Scientific NameRhopalocera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietHerbivore

Butterflies are insects, and like all other types of bugs, they eat nectar from flowers. They often live in warm climates such as rainforests or near water sources. Some species even migrate! Females will lay their eggs on the underside of carnivorous plants because when caterpillars hatch they can easily access nutrients inside these plants.

6. Caterpillar

Caterpillar
Scientific NameLepidoptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietHerbivore

Caterpillars are invertebrates that eat many different types of food. They eat leaves, flowers, or fruits depending on their species. The place where they live can be anywhere from the forest floor to inside a tree trunk. Most of them can be found in Brazil, Mexico, and Madagascar.

7. Centipede

Centipede
Scientific NameChilopoda
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietCarnivore

Centipedes are insects that are invertebrates. They have 30 legs and live on land mostly in warmer areas because they do not like cold or icy conditions! Centipedes eat dead animals, plants, and sometimes other smaller creatures too.

8. Clam

clam
Scientific NameBivalvia
Type of AnimalMollusks
RangeEverywhere in the ocean
DietOmnivore

Clams are bivalve mollusks, which means they have two shells that open and close. They live in both saltwater and freshwater areas. It’s also known for being able to burrow into sand or mud. Clams eat by using their scallop-like tongues called radula. It scrapes through the sand and extracts nutrients from algae or organic matter.

9. Cockroach

cockroach
Scientific NameBlattodea
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

Cockroaches are insects and they love to eat anything. They can live in moist, dark places like sewers or basements of buildings.

They can shed their skin and they have incomplete metamorphosis. They do not chew on wood, but the German cockroach does like to eat glue and book bindings.

They are found all over the world and is the only insect that can survive an atomic bomb.

10. Crawdad

Crawdad
Scientific NameCambarus sp
Type of AnimalCrustacean
RangeUnited States
DietOmnivore

Crawdads are invertebrates in the crustacean family. They have a long body with two antennae on their heads and large claws for catching prey. Crawdads live in lakes, rivers, or ponds.

11. Coral

Coral
Scientific Nameclass Anthozoa
Type of AnimalAnthozoa
RangeEverywhere in the ocean
DietCarnivore

Coral eat tiny organisms like plankton and they live in shallow water or on the ocean floor.

Many different types of coral can be found in oceans all over the world and some even live on land! They eat by capturing tiny plankton that flows around them through their tentacles.

12. Crab

Crab
Scientific NameBrachyura
Type of AnimalCrustacean
RangeEverywhere in the ocean
DietOmnivore

Crabs eat many different foods including plants, algae, and dead fish or birds. Some live in freshwater while others live in saltwater/the ocean and can be found all over the world!

13. Cricket

cricket
Scientific NameGrylloidea
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

7Crickets are omnivores and can eat almost anything, but they need plant matter in their diet. They mainly live underground where it is moist for them to survive. You might find crickets eating fruit or dead insects that you leave outside. Some species of cricket will also eat leaves from your garden plants!

14. Cuttlefish

Cuttlefish
Scientific NameSepiida
Type of AnimalMolluscs
RangeIn cold to tropical seas
DietCarnivore

What Does Cuttlefish Eat? Cuttlefish are carnivorous animals that can eat fish, crabs, and mollusks. They live in the ocean near coral reefs or rocky areas.

The cuttlefish lives around oceans all over the world! Some places they like to go include the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea. They can be found in places that are between 20 degrees north or south of the equator.

15. Dragonfly

dragonfly
Scientific NameAnisoptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietCarnivore

The dragonfly eats only insects. They are found in freshwater, saltwater or terrestrial habitats. Some examples of aquatic areas where you can find these invertebrates include ponds and creeks while some common places on land to spot them would be meadows, marshes, and forests.

16. Flea

Flea
Scientific NameSiphonaptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietCarnivore

Fleas are small insects that feed on the blood of other animals. They live in homes or outdoors and can be found all over the world. Fleas can also cause a lot of harm to the animals that they feast on.

17. Fly

fly
Scientific NameDiptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

A fly is a type of insect that has two wings. It also has small black eyes, long skinny legs, and an oblong body. There are many types of flies all over the world! Some examples include houseflies, fruit flies, horseflies, and crane flies. Flies can often be found in dirty areas living off of garbage or dead animal.

18. Grasshopper

grasshopper
Scientific NameCaelifera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietHerbivore

Grasshoppers are insects that eat plants, grass, and leaves. They live on the land where they can find these types of food sources nearby. Grasshopper eggs lie in the ground protected by a hard coating until hatching time comes around.

19. Jellyfish

Jellyfish
Scientific NameAurelia aurita
Type of AnimalScyphozoa
RangeEverywhere in the ocean
DietCarnivore

Some invertebrates are parasitic and feed on other animals, while others eat plants or decaying matter. Jellyfish in particular can be found living in oceans or bodies of freshwater all over the world! They tend to only come out at night when they want to hunt for smaller fish or crustaceans.

20. Ladybug

Ladybug
Scientific NameCoccinellidae
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietOmnivore

Ladybugs are in the beetle family, which means they have hard wings coverings. They eat aphids and other insects that harm plants. Ladybugs can be found all over North America.

21. Lobster

Lobster
Scientific NameNephropidae
Type of AnimalCrustacean
RangeEverywhere in the ocean
DietOmnivore

Lobsters are a type of invertebrate animal that has ten legs and claws. They live in the ocean, usually on the seafloor, but sometimes they can be found crawling along coral reefs or hiding under rocks! In fact, lobsters eat fish! This means they’re omnivores since they also eat plants from time to time.

22. Lice

Lice
Scientific NamePhthiraptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietCarnivore

Lice are tiny bugs that live on the scalp or body hair of people all around the world. They feed off human blood which is also known as parasitism. These tiny creatures can spread easily which is why it’s so important to treat your lice quickly and properly!

23. Millipede

Millipede
Scientific NameDiplopoda
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeU.S. states, including Alaska and Hawaii
DietHerbivore

Millipedes are a type of invertebrate that lives in forests and has many legs. Some have as little as 40 or so, while others can have up to 750! They eat decaying leaves, fruits, and vegetables.

24. Mosquito

mosquito
Scientific NameCulicidae
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietHerbivore

Mosquitoes are a type of invertebrate that falls under the insect category. They can be found all over the world and they will eat plants, animals, or blood to survive. When mosquitos feed off humans it is extremely dangerous as this has led to many deaths due to diseases caused by mosquito bites such as malaria. Mosquito’s can be found in many different habitats including forests, swamps, and cities.

25. Moth

moth
Scientific NameLepidoptera
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeEverywhere on Earth
DietHerbivore

Moths are nocturnal insects that eat nectar, pollen, and fruit. They live in forests or wooded areas where there is food for their larvae (the young form of an insect). Parts of the world like parts of North America, South Africa, and Australia has the most moths because of the warmer climate.

Go Deeper

More Examples of Animals that Are Invertebrates

EarthwormsSnails
MusselsSpiders
OctopiSponges
OystersSquids
Praying MantisesStarfish
ScorpionsTarantulas
Sea StarsTermites
Sea UrchinsWasps
SlugsWorms

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