Katydids

Giant Shield-back Bush-Cricket (Siliquofera grandis) The Giant Shield-back Bush-cricket (Siliquofera grandis) from New Guinea has thickened forewings forming leathery covers over the hindwings. The Family Tettigoniidae, known as katydids, are also called long-horned grasshoppers and bush-crickets. There are thought to be about 1000 species in Australia.

Katydids are opportunistic feeders. Even herbivorous species are known to be carnivorous.

Male katydids have sound-producing organs located on the back edges of their front wings. In some species females are also capable of making sounds.

Spotted Katydid
Ephippitytha trigintiduoguttata

Biology

This species is widespread in Australia, occurring in open forests where it feeds on eucalypt leaves. Males have a soft call at night and are commonly heard from the treetops throughout Brisbane suburbs. They are sometimes attracted to house lights.

Identification

Length 65 mm. A large green katydid with many brown spots around the edges of each forewing which resembles a chewed eucalypt leaf.

Spotted Katydid (Ephippitytha trigintiduoguttata) Spotted Katydid (Ephippitytha trigintiduoguttata) 

Mountain Katydid
Acripeza reticulata

Biology

The distinctive defence display of a female Mountain Katydid, Acripeza reticulata. Both sexes are found on the ground in open forest in eastern Australia. The female has a spectacular defence display. She lifts both fore wings to expose a brilliant red, blue and black abdomen and simultaneously inflates an orange membrane between the head and thorax.

Identification

Mountain Katydid (Acripeza reticulata)

The distinctive defensive display of a female Mountain Katydid, Acripeza reticulata.

Length 50 mm. Both sexes are greyish-brown but differ greatly in shape. Females are short and broad with rounded, shell-like forewings and no hindwings. Males have fully developed forewings and hindwings that extend well past the tip of the abdomen.

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