Costa Rican grasshopper
March 28, 2010
This is a (very impressive) grasshopper I found last summer in the Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica. It’s about an inch long. I know it’s a grasshopper (probably, I think) but I was wondering if it’s a special grasshopper. If not, it’s special to me, at least.
(Also, I just found your wonderful site and am submitting several inquiries about bugs I’ve been pondering for a while. I acknowledge your limited time to respond to these requests and will not get worked up if you can’t respond to all/most/any of them.)
Costa Rica, Pacific Coast

Immature Grasshopper: Tropidacris cristata

Hi Jenny,
Your letter is so sweet and thoughtful.  We agree that this is a pretty special looking Grasshopper, and we do not know what it is.  We hope to be able to identify it soon, but meanwhile, we are posting it as unidentified in the hope that our readership can assist in the identification.  We may also contact Piotr Naskrecki who has identified many Costa Rican Orthopterans for us.

Immature Grasshopper: Tropidacris cristata

We found a match online, but it is not identified.

Piotr Naskrecki identifies this nymph
Hi Daniel,
This is a nymph of Tropidacris cristata (Romaleidae), the largest
grasshopper in Central America. The adults lose the beautiful, striped
pattern, but gain huge, red wings.

Ed. Note
We have identified the adult Tropidacris dux several times, and we wonder if the two are the same species or just close relatives. This is the first submission we have gotten of the immature nymph in the genus with its drastically different coloration.  The Forestry Images website indicates that dux is a subspecies of Tropidacris cristata.

Yes, T. cristata dux is a subspecies of T. cristata, but I would be careful
assigning this animal to a subspecies based on a nymph.

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