Subject: Grasshopper-looking insect
August 15, 2012 6:45 pm
I was hiking up Mt Elbert, in Colorado, this morning (8/15/12) and came across this bug. We were about 1/2 a mile from the summit (about 14k feet). It was fairly large. I obnoxiously chased it with my camera and only slightly annoyed it (it moved just a little out of my way).
Sorry I didn’t get in a good perspective for this bug’s size.
This large, flightless Katydid is commonly called a Mormon Cricket. When conditions are right, they can appear in great numbers, eating most things in their path. Legend has it that when the Mormons first settled in Utah, a swarm of Mormon Crickets descended upon the crops threatening to wipe out the harvest. A flock of seagulls appeared and devoured the Mormon Crickets, saving the crops. Mormon Crickets are generally depicted as being black, but green individuals are not uncommon.