Subject: Species of this Grasshopper
Location: Nepal Ghats
October 8, 2016 11:46 pm
My friend is traveling in Nepal and photographed a variety that I have yet to be able to identify. It is very similar to the Nepal Coffee Locust and is likely a milkweed grasshopper varietal of some kind. Could you help us come up with a species name it is truly beautiful. Thank you
Signature: Ranger Bert
Dear Ranger Bert,
We see from a comment you have provided to a posting in our archives that you have used the more than 20,000 postings on our site to identify this Coffee Locust, Ausarches miliaris, a member of the family Pyrgomorphidae, the Toxic Milkweed Grasshoppers that flaunt this toxicity or bad taste through aposomatic or warning coloration. The images we have found online, including on the Insects in Indian Agroecosystems and Macroclub, have yellow or white banded faces. Your individual may represent a different species in the genus, a subspecies, or most likely just a color variation. According to ZipcodeZoo: “It swarms in October, the mating and egg-laying season, collecting on bushes and grasses. It is heavy and sluggish, able to make only short leaps, very visible on vegetation. Outbreaks leading to this species damaging cultivated crops are uncommon. When A. miliaris (of either sex) is disturbed or grabbed, it emits a sharp rasping noise from its thoracic segments. If its thorax is pinched, it also squirts a clear viscous mucus with unpleasant smell and a bitter taste, faintly alkaline, with many embedded bubbles. This foam comes out as a strong jet from apertures in the thorax, and more gently from other openings in the body (ten in total); it heaps up around the insect and partly covers it.”
Thank you so much.
My friends use me to help ID stuff all the time and this guy stumped me with its colors. Really appreciate your time and expertise.
Brett Thomsen (aka Ranger Bert)