What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Blue Cicada?
Sun, Oct 26, 2008 at 10:23 AM
Blue Cicada?
This little guy was found near a stream near the Blue Ridge Mountains in Northern Virginia. It is about .75 of a centimeter. Has the eyes and wings of cicada, I think. Blue and Red stripes are unique.
thanks, Don
Neersville, VA stream

Unknown Treehopper

Unknown Treehopper

Hi Don,
These are Treehoppers, and Treehoppers are related to Cicadas. Treehoppers are in the family Membracidae and Cicadas are in the family Cicadidae. Both are in the superfamily Cicadoidea. We tried searching the entries posted to BugGuide for the family Membracidae, but we could not find a match to your specimen. Perhaps some reader will be able to provide an answer.

Unknown Treehopper

Unknown Treehopper

Update: October 27, 2008
We just received a comment from a reader raising the possibility of this being an Oak Treehopper. We noticed the similarity in coloration when we searched BugGuide, but we neglected to read the information on the species, Platycotis vittata. We overlooked the possibility as the images on BugGuide of adults all have a horn, but the information states: “Grayish spotted with yellow, or turquoise with red stripes and red eyes. With or without a thorn-like horn” and “There are four named varieties and several other color variations, and some individuals lack the pronotal horn.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

3 Responses to Oak Treehoppers

  1. drahn says:

    Possibly an oak treehopper? all image searches have pointed that way.

  2. bugman says:

    Thanks for your identification. We have amended our posting based on your assistance.
    Bugman

  3. Dave says:

    I’m pretty sure these guys are edible. Treehoppers are eaten in South and Central America, including Mexico where they’re known as ‘periquitos,’ or ‘parakeets.’ A few genera are listed, including Umbonia, Ceresa, and Hoplophorion. Lastly, some of the species consumed sport bright colors, so this is likely not a case of true aposematic coloration

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