Greater Anglewing Katydid

Common Name: Greater Anglewing Katydid.

Scientific Name: Microcentrum Rhombifolium.

What to look for?  Visualize a grasshopper mimicking a green leaf! It is difficult to see because of this excellent camouflage. Greater Anglewing Katydids are green. They are readily identifiable by the large, light green veins in the wings – giving them a leaf-like appearance. Their heads are small with yellowish-green eyes shaped like orbs. Greater Anglewing Katydids have very long, thin antennae that are as long as or longer than their body. They have a blade-like body that is thin and much taller than it is wide. The hind legs are significantly longer than their other pairs of legs. Its large forewings are typically held vertically over body.

Where can they be found at Carillon Stonegate Pond? The Greater Anglewing Katydid is can be seen from late summer to early fall – August to October. Look for them around the various trees and wildflowers along the pathway next to Carillon Stonegate Pond and in your own lovely yards!

How big are they? Large! The Greater Anglewing Katydid averages three inches in length.

What are their flight patterns? Greater Anglewing Katydids tend to be poor flyers. Some only flutter their wings as they leap.

How else do they behave? During the day, Greater Anglewing Katydids rest in a specific roosting posture to make them look even more like just a leaf on a plant. Since they are primarily nocturnal, they use sensors receptors on their antennas to help them find their way around in the dark.

What’s for dinner? Katydids are herbaceous. You may find some feeding on leaves and flowers in your garden or on your potted plants.  They are an important food for many animals, including birds, bats, rodents, tree frogs, spiders, and praying mantids.

Where do they take up residence? Greater Anglewing Katydids are found across the eastern and southwestern U.S. They are found across all of Illinois. Greater Anglewing Katydids prefer habitats of grasslands, open woods with deciduous trees and shrubs and the edges.

When and where do they breed and nest? Greater Anglewing Katydid females deposit eggs in soil, plant stems or tree bark in late summer or fall. The adults die off, and the following spring the eggs hatch into nymphs. These generally resemble the adults except they are smaller and lack fully developed wings and reproductive organs. A few will look different than the adults. As the insects go through incomplete metamorphosis the wings gradually appear through generally five successive molts.

Where do they migrate? Greater Anglewing Katydids do not migrate. In our area, katydids overwinter as eggs.

What is their conservation status? There is no concern.

Do they make any interesting sounds? Male Greater Anglewing Katydids make a rhythmic, “tic, tic, tic, tic” song that goes for 10 to 20 clicks. The name ‘katydid’ refers to the sound made by males when they are trying to attract receptive females. In order to detect sounds, katydids have a tympanum, a slit-like or flat patch on each front leg, which functions as an “ear.”

Interesting Facts About the Greater Anglewing Katydid:

  • There are about 6,400 species worldwide, with the greatest diversity in the tropics. There are about 255 species in North American and 20 species in the Midwest.

  • Katydids are cousins to crickets and grasshoppers.

  • It is said that you can estimate the temperature by counting the number of katydid chirps that occur over a 15 second period and then add 37 to that number.

  • Some katydids have been called long-horned grasshoppers because of their long and slender shape, but actually katydids are more closely related to crickets than to any type of grasshopper.

For more information on the Greater Anglewing Katydid and sources of information used in this blog (these are the several of the sources that I am using to learn as I blog), please visit Iowa State University Bug Guide, University of Wisconsin Field Station, University of Wisconsin Master Gardener Program, and The Daily Garden Blog.

The Carillon at Stonegate community is very fortunate to have a variety of wetland, forest and prairie environments conducive to a variety of birds and other wildlife, insects and plants. Our community and the Kane County Forest Preserve do an exceptional job in maintaining this natural environment – both for the benefit of the birds and wildlife and for our residents to enjoy.

 

Take a hike and see what you can find – and identify!