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Greater Arid-land Katydid (Neobarrettia spinosa)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Greater Arid-land Katydid



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Image Credit: Geannei B. from Austin, TX
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Image Credit: Geannei B. from Austin, TX
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Unusual pink eyes and prickly legs on the enormous Greater Arid-land Katydid make it hard to miss.



Updated: 08/23/2019; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
Greater Arid-land Katydids are relatives of the grasshopper. One way Katydids physically differ from Grasshoppers is by having very long antennae.
Grasshoppers have much shorter ones. Katydids have short wings that are capable of flight, and long hind legs make them good jumpers. This species preys on smaller insects and flashes brightly patterned hindwings when threatened or disturbed.

Greater Arid-land Katydids are found in a variety of dry habitats. Desert shrubs like creosote and jojoba, as well as cacti, are popular resting places. They have also been seen in woody areas and hanging out in open fields. The Greater Arid-land Katydid is bigger than many other types of Katydids and grows large enough to fill the entire hand of an adult. The green head and body contrast with light pink eyes, an uncommon color for an insect. Short, black spikes on its legs may be used to create a species-specific noise which could aid in identifying it. Turquoise and black wings hide under green, veiny wing covers. Females have an ovipositor, a long spine-like 'tail', that is used for depositing eggs, not for defense.




General Characteristics
Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Flying insect icon
Jumping insect icon
Spiny / Spiky insect icon




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Orthoptera
        Family: Tettigoniidae
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          Genus: Neobarrettia
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            Species: spinosa
Identifying Information
Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Neobarrettia spinosa
Category: Grasshopper or Cricket
Size (Adult; Length): 40mm to 110mm (1.57" to 4.33")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: green, black, gray, blue, pink
Descriptors: large, grasshopper, eyes, wings, flying, spiky
Relative Size Comparison
Typical Range Between 40mm and 110mm
Lo: 40mm
Md: 75mm
Hi: 110mm
Territorial Map*
U.S., Canada, and Mexico
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Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Greater Arid-land Katydid may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data is useful when attempting to see concentrations of particular species across the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some insects are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America. States/Territories shown above are a general indicator of areas inhabited by the Greater Arid-land Katydid. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.

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