Acrolophitus hirtipes (Say)


Adult female

Common name - Green fool grasshopper (Helfer, 1972) or Crested-keel grasshopper (Pfadt, 1972).

Geographic distribution - discontinuous distribution in Alberta and Saskatchewan (Canada), Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and Mexico (Brooks, 1958; Otte, 1981). In Colorado it is found on the plains and eastern mountain valleys (Hebard, 1929).

Colorado Distribution Map

Habitat - sandy areas, areas of dry, low herbage or gently sloping, gravelly, southern exposures (Anderson and Wright, 1952; Brooks, 1958; Hebard 1928).

Food habits - forbivorous and prefers such plants of the Borage family as gromwell, stickseed, cryptantha and plants of the genus Phasuba (Brooks, 1958).

Eggs - egg pods do not contain froth. An average of six light-tan eggs per pod are arranged in two columns of three eggs each. Average egg length, 6.4 mm; average diameter, 1.5 mm (Onsager and Mulkern, 1963).

Nymph - five instars (Brunsven, 1967).

Adult - medium size to large, General color is pale green without distinct spots. Antennae are red. Face is long and slanted and widens from the eyes to the clypeus. Top of head ends in a pointed knob. Pronotum is slightly compressed at the sides; high semicircular crest is on the top of the posterior two-thirds of the pronotum; the dorsal posterior margin is a right angle. Tegmina are long, opaque and finely veined, sometimes with indistinct spots. Wings have a pale yellow-green disc and a broad, transverse, black band that diminishes and curves inward on the posterior border. Apical third of wing is clear. Hind femora are slender. Legs are covered with tiny hairs. Male length, 25 mm; female; 30 mm (Brooks, 1958; Thomas, 1873).
Adults stridulate loudly in the field (Pfadt, 1972).

Oviposition - eggs are laid just below the soil surface (Onsager and Mulkern, 1963).

Seasonal history - adults occur from early June to late August (Newton et al., 1954).

Abundance and importance - moderately abundant on the plains of eastern Colorado (Hebard, 1929).

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Biology of Common Colorado Grasshoppers
Grasshoppers of Colorado Contents