Huge green Ortopthera (?)
July 5, 2009
Helo! Todays walk near Danube cliff revealed me this huge cricket, which im trying to identify whole day. But closest that i get is Phaneroptera nana… Still it doesnt seep to be one. Phaneroptera nana is relatively frekvent here… Anyway, this one on the picture have more coned head, somewhat thinner body and white stripes 🙂 Can u help?
This is most definitely not a Mediterranean Katydid, Phaneroptera nana. Your specimen is a female judging by her long swordlike ovipositor. She is also in the suborder Ensifera, the Longhorned Orthopterans. We also would concur that this is a species of Katydid in the family Tettigoniidae. We believe we have identified it as a Predatory Bush Cricket in the genus Saga, perhaps Saga pedo based on a photo on BioLib. There are many additional images on BioLib and when we did a websearch of the name, we found a page that indicates 6 specimens were found in Michigan and indicates it is called the Matriarchal Katydid because: “No males; females large and wingless. Known only from Jackson County, Michigan. Length 60–65 mm.” and “A reasonable hypothesis as to how the matriarchal katydid was brought to Michigan is that one or more of its eggs were in soil adhering to farm equipment returning from plowing contests in Italy. The first Michigan specimen was collected in 1970 and only six have been taken since. Unlike our native katydids and other species of Saga in Europe, the matriarchal katydid is obligatorily parthenogenetic. No males are known from here or from Europe. Even though there is no male calling song, females have prominent tympanal organs on the fore tibiae.” We located a pdf ( cantrall72) of a Great Lakes Entomologist article written by Irving J Cantrall that contains accounts of the discovery in the early 1970s of this species in Michigan.