Dactylotum bicolor (Thomas)


Adult female

Common name - Pictured grasshopper (Helfer, 1972) or Barber pole grasshopper.

Geographic distribution - the subspecies D. bicolor pictum occurs from northern Texas and northeastern New Mexico to Montana (Helfer, 1972). In Colorado it can be found on the eastern plains and foothills. The subspecies D. bicolor variegatum doesn't occur in Colorado (Alexander, 1941; Helfer, 1972).

Colorado Distribution Map

Habitat - dwells in areas of sparse, low vegetation (Hebard, 1928; Mulkern et al., 1969).

Food habits - forbivorous, eating such low-value forbs as false boneset, scarlet globemallow, prairie clover and scurfpea (Mulkern et al., 1969).

Eggs - 15 to 25 eggs are deposited in three or four disorderly columns within the pod. Average egg length, 5.3 mm; average diameter, 1.4 mm. Color, brownish-yellow (Onsager and Mulkern, 1963).

Adult - medium size. Brilliantly marked with reddish-orange, black and yellow. Face is vertical; vertex is rounded; antennae are slender. Pronotum is somewhat cylindrical and textured with small punctures. Top of pronotum has three transverse incisions. Dorsal posterior margin of pronotum is rounded. Tegmina and wings are very small. Tegmina are black with fine yellow veins. Body is distinctly banded with black and yellow. Midline of pronotum and abdomen and parts of the face, pronotum and thorax are marked with red-orange. Hind femora are banded with black and red-orange. Hind tibiae are yellow and green. Male length, 25 mm; female, 32 mm. (Coppock, 1962; Helfer, 1972; Thomas, 1873).

Oviposition - shown experimentally to prefer creek loam and fine sand for oviposition (isely, 1938).

Seasonal history - adults are present in August and September (Newton et al., 1954).

Abundance and importance - of very little importance in the grasslands (Mulkern et al., 1969). It is sometimes numerous in alfalfa fields (Helfer, 1972).

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Biology of Common Colorado Grasshoppers
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