I have previously sent you an email regarding this lovely animal. I was in tears as I took the photos (having sprayed it to keep it immobile while I photographed it – sorry). It appears identical to a Weta that you have posted, except that this one has very large wings! Isn’t a “winged Weta” a contradiction in terms? Hope you can help to identify this lovely animal. She was beautiful. Note: It was found on the fringe of the arid lands in South Australia (300 Kilometres North of Adelaide).
We hope your tears are an indication that you will not be killing creatures in the future just to photograph them. This is not a Weta. The long ovipositor indicates the specimen is a female. It is a longhorned Orthopteran in the suborder Ensifera, and probably a Katydid in the family Tettigoniidae, but we have not had any luck identifying the species. The Geocities site did not provide any convincing matches. It appears as though the antennae on your specimen have been damaged, either through rough living, or traumatic dying, or possibly post mortem. Grev and Trevor frequently assist us with Australian species, and they may have better luck than we have had with a species identification on this striking specimen.
Update: (07/03/2008) Katydid IDs from Piotr Naskrecki
I have been looking at the page with unidentified katydids (Katydids 2), and thought I could help with some ID’s. From top to bottom they are: Australian Raspy cricket (not a katydid but a member of Gryllacrididae) possibly Ametrus sp.