Subject: Mating Phasmids Of Unknown Species
Location: Near Crosslake, Crow Wing County, Minnesota, USA
August 5, 2012 4:51 am
I came across this connected and presumably mating pair of walking sticks by random chance. The smaller brown one (the male, I think?) was firmly connected to the larger green female(?) via the male’s rearmost part, which was wrapped around the corresponding part on the female.
They had their pictures taken on one of those clear plastic trays that small tomatoes on the vine are sold in at stores, if that gives any sense of scale. I would estimate that the female was about 2” long.
The location was north central Minnesota, USA (Crow Wing County).
What species are these? Are they common in this area?
We believe these are mating Northern Walkingsticks, Diapheromera femorata, based on this photo posted to BugGuide and they also fit this verbal description from BugGuide: “Very elongated, wingless. Male brown, female greenish brown. Antennae 2/3 length of body. Cerci with one segment, often resembling palps at the tip of the abdomen.” Regarding their population, BugGuideprovides this information: “This species is native to the US and Canada. It is the most common species of Phasmid in North America. When very numerous, they can severely defoliate trees.”