Subject: West Texas Grasshopper
Location: El Paso, Texas
October 27, 2014 4:05 pm
I am a Park Ranger for Texas Parks & Wildlife in El Paso, Texas. The other day I was walking through our park and found this beauty. I thought it might be some species of short-horned grasshopper, but I will admit that my entomology knowledge isn’t what it should be.
This specimen is roughly 3-4 inches long and was hanging out in a semi-marshy/overgrown area. Any idea what it is?
Thank you for your time!
Signature: Entomology Challenged Park Ranger
Dear Entomology Challenged Park Ranger,
We believe your Bird Grasshopper in the genus Schistocerca is most likely an American Bird Grasshopper, Schistocerca americana, based on this image posted to BugGuide. According to BugGuide: “Large, usually has creamy strip extending from head to forewings. Characteristically flies up and into trees when disturbed, behavior quite different from most other grasshoppers.” Do you have an additional image from above that shows the top of the head? We could confirm its identity if the “creamy strip” is visible.