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Plains Lubber Grasshopper (Bracystola magna)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Plains Lubber Grasshopper.

 Updated: 8/29/2018; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.InsectIdentification.org




The colorful Plains Lubber Grasshopper makes a big impression thanks to its large size and tiny wings.



Though it can leap like a champion, the native Plains Lubber Grasshopper does not fly. There are a handful of color variations: some are either dark or light brown while others are green. All have small, speckled wings near the middle of the body that range from blush to bright pink. The long, rear legs have a black joint. An ivory stripe runs down the center of the back, with small ivory dots on either side of it. The dark head may be gray or blue-gray or dark green. An ivory line stretches down both sides of the head and thorax.

This species is common in the Western states and provinces. They are omnivores that eat both plant matter and insects. Look for them in prairies with low-growing grasses and plants where they can both blend in and feed. They can also be seen in areas gravelly areas where pavement and landscape meet.

Historically, they had been once been an agricultural pest to crops like cotton. Now they are not found in sufficient numbers to be a significant threat to any crop. They sometimes have population booms for a few years, but are then scarcely sighted in years after. It is possible that eggs delay hatching for a year or two until better conditions occur. Hatching occurs in the spring, and after a series of molting, adults are mature by late summer. Thanks to the visibly large size of its cells and DNA, the Plains Lubber Grasshopper helped scientists research chromosomes in the early history of the field of genetics.




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Orthoptera
        Family: Romalidae
          Genus: Bracystola
            Species: magna
Identifying Information
Scientific Name: Bracystola magna
Category: Grasshopper or Cricket
Size (Adult; Length): 45mm to 55mm (1.76in to 2.15in)
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: brown, pink, black, gray, green
Descriptors: multicolored, large, pink wings, dots, jumping, song, chirp
Territorial Map
Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
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Territorial Reach (A-to-Z)
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
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Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland and Labrador
Nova Scotia
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Mexican National Flag Graphic
Mexico
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.