Hypochlora alba (Dodge)

 
Adult male Adult female

Common name - Sage grasshopper (Helfer, 1972).

Geographic distribution - Alberta to Manitoba (Canada) and south to Texas. Inhabits the Great Plains (Coppock, 1962; Helfer, 1972). In Colorado it is found on the plains of the eastern half of the state (Hebard, 1929).

Colorado Distribution Map

Habitat - bushes, especially sagebrush (Helfer, 1972).

Food habits - monophagous, feeding almost exclusively on cudweed (Mulkern et al., 1969).

Eggs - eggs are tan colored. Pods contain 12 eggs arranged in two columns. Average egg length, 4 mm; average diameter, 1 mm (Onsager and Mulkern 1963).

Nymph - five instars (Ramsay, 1964).

Adult - small to medium size. General color resembles the host plant (Mulkern et al., 1964), which is grey to green. Face is moderately slanted back. Pronotum is slightly wider posteriorly, dorsal posterior margin is rounded. A brown band extends from the eyes back across the lateral lobes of the pronotum. Tegmina are uniform green, short and pointed. Occasional long-winged forms are reported (Helfer, 1972). Hind tibiae are blue-green (Coppock, 1962). Male length, 15 mm; female, 20 mm.
 
Male abdomen tip (Side view)

Oviposition - in digging the hole for egg laying, the female holds on to some upright foliage and sits erect with the hind femora held high. She remains in a vertical position while depositing her eggs in the soil (Criddle, 1933a).

Seasonal history - adults are present from July to October but are most abundant in July and August (Campbell et al., 1974; Helfer, 1972).

Abundance and importance - possibly beneficial since it feeds on undesirable forbs. It is common over the plains region of Colorado where its food plants occur (Gillette, 1904).

H. alba fact sheet from the Field Guide to Common Western Grasshoppers
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