Sonoran Desert Naturalist >>> Field Guide >>> Grasshoppers and Crickets >>> Shield-backed Katydid

Shield-backed Katydid
Sooty Longwing

Capnobotes fuliginosus

 
Watercolor © by Michael Plagens

Watercolor from specimens found at Bumble Bee, Arizona, 12 July 1992. The large grashopper-like insect at lower left is a katydid - a kind of cricket. Foothills Palo Verde; Yellow Palo Verde -- Parkinsonia microphylla -- serves as host to these plant feeders.

Tetigoniidae -- Katydid Family

These large desert and foothill katydids reach maturity by June and males begin stridulating after dark. They can be quite loud. These katydids feed mostly on shrub leaves but will also eat other insects if they can catch them. Note the long antennae ... this provides an alternate name for these large tree crickets: Long-horned Grasshoppers. Typical grasshoppers have short antennae.

To see detail of the stridulating mechanism, Click Here. For more information about Katydids go to the Tree of Life.

In semi-arid Utah another species of shield-backed katydid is known as the Mormon Cricket (Anabrus simplex).

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2008