; subclass Pterygota, order Phthiraptera)
Group of lice, comprising the suborders Ischnocera, Amblycera, and Rhyncophthirina, all of which possess functional mandibles. The common name ‘chewing lice' applied to this group is preferred to ‘biting lice’ because members of the fourth suborder of lice, the Anoplura, also bite. The use of the Mallophaga as a taxonomic group is to be discouraged because the Rhyncophthirina are more closely related to the Anoplura than they are to the Ischnocera and the Amblycera, and the Ischnocera are more closely related to the Rhyncophthirina and Anoplura than they are to the Amblycera.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.