Colorful and tiny Treehoppers can leap great distances between plants to escape predators.
Treehoppers come in a variety of colors. There are many genera and each has a pattern variation or region of dominance. The protrusion, or 'horn', at the top of the head mimics a thorn and helps conceal the insect from predators when resting among plants. The bright coloration of some species may be another form of defense, giving predators pause when considering an attack on an insect with such alarming colors.
A mighty leap is what gave this insect its name. This remarkable ability ushers them quickly out of danger. Warnings to others nearby are given by vibrating the abdomen on a stem or leaf. Adult Treehoppers can be found on their favorite plants, usually in the 'elbows', where twig meets branch. They feed on the liquid from a plant, siphoning off what they want from the tender parts. Multiple Treehoppers feeding on a young plant can weaken the plant to death, but infestations are uncommon.
Females lay eggs in the tip of a twig, pushing them into small slits for protection. Because the tip of a plant (called its apical meristem) is the site of continued linear growth, this tissue damage can kill the twig, though the Treehopper nymphs will have long abandoned it before then.
Scientific Name: Ophiderma bimaculata
Cicada and Planthopper
Size (Adult; Length): 8mm to 12mm (0.31in to 0.47in)
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