Cricket vs Grasshopper: Uncovering the Key Differences

Cricket and grasshopper: two insects that are often confused with each other due to their similar appearance. However, these creatures from the Order Orthoptera have distinct features and behaviors that set them apart from each other. In this article, we’ll delve into the differences and similarities between crickets and grasshoppers to help you understand these fascinating insects.

Crickets are known for their characteristic chirping sounds, which are produced by rubbing their wings together. They are predominantly nocturnal, and their large, round eyes are designed for night vision. On the other hand, grasshoppers are active during the day and produce sound by rubbing their hind legs against their wings. Their eyes are smaller and more elongated.

This article will cover important aspects including their physical features, habitat, diet, and behavior to further distinguish crickets from grasshoppers. By understanding these differences, you’ll be able to appreciate each insect’s unique role within their respective ecosystems.

Cricket vs Grasshopper: Understanding the Differences

Physical Appearance

  • Crickets:
    • Typically brownish or black-colored
    • Slender body
    • Long antennae, often longer than their body
    • Wings folded on the back
  • Grasshoppers:
    • Green, brown, or yellow-colored
    • Strong, shorter legs
    • Short antennae, usually less than half the length of the body
    • Broad, rigid wings

Example: A house cricket is brown and has long antennae, while a short-horned grasshopper has green or brown color with short antennae.

Habitat

  • Crickets:
    • Prefer moist environments
    • Often found in gardens, fields, and under stones
  • Grasshoppers:
Crickets Grasshoppers
Environment Moist (gardens, fields) Dry (grasslands, western range)
Hiding spots Under stones, debris On vegetation, in tall grass

Behavior

  • Crickets:
    • Nocturnal
    • Omnivorous, eat plants and smaller insects
    • Known for their singing (chirping)
  • Grasshoppers:
    • Diurnal
    • Herbivores, primarily feed on various plants
    • Makes less distinct sounds by rubbing legs against wings

Example: A cricket is often heard chirping at night, while a grasshopper is active and feeding during the day.

Anatomy and Features

Legs and Hopping Abilities

Grasshoppers and crickets share similarities in leg structure, but they have specific adaptations for their distinct hopping abilities.

  • Grasshoppers have long, powerful hind legs designed for jumping great distances.
  • Crickets also possess hind legs suitable for hopping, but they’re not as elongated and robust as grasshoppers’.

These differences in leg structure contribute to their unique hopping abilities:

  • Grasshoppers can jump approximately 20 times their body length.
  • Crickets, while capable of jumping, are generally less efficient due to their shorter hind legs.

Wings and Flying

Both insects possess front wings, but their appearances and functionality differ. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Grasshoppers typically have well-developed wings, some with bright colors to attract mates or blend into their environment.
  • Crickets usually have more modest wings, primarily used for sound production rather than flying.

The following table provides a comparison of their flying abilities:

Grasshoppers Crickets
Flight Efficient flyers Weak flyers
Usage Mating, escape Mating, sound production

Sound Production

Grasshoppers and crickets exhibit unique sound production methods called stridulation. They create these sounds by rubbing specific body parts together:

  • Grasshoppers rub their hind legs against their wings or abdomen.
  • Crickets rub their front wings together.

In addition, both insects possess auditory organs, called tympana:

  • Grasshopper tympana are located on their abdomen’s first segment.
  • Cricket tympana are found on their front legs.

These unique features allow each insect to produce distinct sounds for communication and mating purposes.

Classification and Species

Orthoptera Order and Suborders

Orthoptera is a diverse order of insects that includes crickets and grasshoppers. It has two main suborders:

  1. Ensifera – Long-horned grasshoppers, crickets, and katydids
  2. Caelifera – Short-horned grasshoppers and locusts

Common Types of Crickets and Grasshoppers

Within these suborders, there are several common types of crickets and grasshoppers that can be found in various habitats.

Ensifera

  • Bush Cricket: Also known as katydids, they have long antennae and a leaf-like appearance.

Example: Great Green Bush Cricket – It is a large, green species with powerful legs for jumping.

Caelifera

  • Grasshopper: Shorter antennae and are usually found in grassy areas or fields.

Example: Locust – A type of grasshopper known for its swarming behavior, causing significant agricultural damage.

Here’s a comparison table of crickets and grasshoppers:

Feature Cricket Grasshopper
Suborder Ensifera Caelifera
Antennae Long Short
Hind Legs Strong for jumping Strong for jumping
Sound Production Rubbing wings or legs together Rubbing wings or legs together
Nocturnal/Diurnal Mostly nocturnal Diurnal
Damage to Agriculture Less common More common (especially locust)

Key characteristics of crickets and grasshoppers include:

  • Both belong to the Orthoptera order
  • Both have strong hind legs for jumping
  • Both can produce sound by rubbing their wings or legs together
  • Crickets are generally nocturnal, while grasshoppers are diurnal
  • Grasshoppers are more likely to cause damage to agriculture, especially locusts

Life Cycle and Reproduction

Mating and Mating Calls

Grasshoppers and crickets exhibit different mating behaviors. Male grasshoppers attract females by rubbing their wings together, creating a distinctive sound. On the other hand, male crickets use their chirping sound to attract females, created by rubbing their wings together as well.

Grasshoppers:

  • Wing-rubbing
  • Unique sound to attract females

Crickets:

  • Chirping sound
  • Attracts females by varying their chirps

Eggs and Development

Both grasshoppers and crickets lay eggs, but their oviposition methods differ. Female grasshoppers use their ovipositors to deposit eggs in the ground or plant material. Female crickets also lay eggs using ovipositors, but they usually deposit them in moist soil or similar substrates.

Grasshoppers:

  • Lay eggs in ground or plant material
  • Use ovipositors for egg-laying

Crickets:

  • Lay eggs in moist soil
  • Also use ovipositors for egg-laying

The development of grasshoppers and crickets is similar—they undergo incomplete metamorphosis, meaning they do not have a pupal stage. After hatching, they go through several nymph stages before reaching adulthood.

Comparison Table:

Aspect Grasshoppers Crickets
Mating Calls Wing-rubbing Chirping
Egg-laying Ground, plant material Moist soil
Metamorphosis Incomplete Incomplete

Diet and Feeding Habits

Herbivorous and Omnivorous Diets

Grasshoppers are primarily herbivorous insects. They feed on:

  • Leaves
  • Stems
  • Flowers

Crickets, on the other hand, have an omnivorous diet. They consume:

  • Plant material
  • Animal remains
  • Insects, including aphids
Insect Diet Example Food Items
Grasshopper Herbivorous Leaves, stems, flowers
Cricket Omnivorous Plant material, insects

Impact on Plants and Crops

Grasshoppers can have significant negative impacts on plants and crops. They can destroy:

  • Grasslands
  • Cultivated crops (e.g., alfalfa, barley, corn, and wheat) 1

Crickets have a lower impact on plants and crops due to their omnivorous diet. However, they may still cause damage to:

  • Seedlings
  • Small plant populations

In terms of habitat, grasshoppers are commonly found in open grasslands, while crickets often reside in forested areas.

Predators such as birds, reptiles, and other insects help manage the population of both grasshoppers and crickets, ensuring a balance in their respective ecosystems.

Human Interaction

Edible Insects and Their Use

In recent years, both crickets and grasshoppers have gained attention as sustainable and nutritious food sources for human consumption. Edible insects, in general, are rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals, offering various nutritional benefits.

For instance, cricket flour is a popular alternative to traditional wheat flour, providing a gluten-free and protein-rich option for baking. In the UK, some companies have started to produce products, such as energy bars or protein shakes, that use cricket flour as the main ingredient.

Grasshoppers, on the other hand, are commonly consumed whole or as an ingredient in various dishes, especially in regions like Southeast Asia and Central America. In the United States, you may find grasshopper-based products such as snacks or taco fillings. Some people claim that grasshoppers have a crunchy texture and taste similar to shrimp.

Insect Nutritional Benefits Use in Cuisine
Cricket High in protein, low in fat, gluten-free Cricket flour, energy bars, protein shakes, snacks
Grasshopper High in protein, rich in vitamins Whole grasshoppers, snacks, taco fillings, dishes
  • Features of edible insects:
    • Sustainable food source
    • High in protein
    • Rich in vitamins and minerals

Crickets and Grasshoppers as Pests

While both insects offer unique benefits, they can also cause problems. In the United States, particularly in the western regions, certain species of grasshoppers are known to massively damage crops when their populations reach outbreak levels. This can lead to significant economic and environmental setbacks for farmers.

Crickets, on the other hand, can pose a nuisance to households, with their loud chirping and potential to damage plants and fabrics.

  • Characteristics of crickets and grasshoppers as pests:
    • Damage crops
    • Chirp loudly (crickets)
    • Affect household plants and fabric (crickets)

While the prospect of consuming insects may not be for everyone, the growing interest in edible insects like crickets and grasshoppers offers an opportunity to explore new, sustainable food sources that could help alleviate food shortages and provide alternative nutritional options. At the same time, it’s important to be aware of the potential problems these insects may cause, particularly their impact as agricultural pests.

Comparison Table

Grasshoppers and crickets are often confused with each other due to their similar appearances. However, they have a few key differences. To compare them easily, let’s take a look at this comparison table:

Feature Grasshopper Cricket
Antennae Short and thick Long and thin
Body Shape Cylindrical Flattened on the top and bottom
Hind Legs Built for jumping Built for jumping
Sound Production Rubbing wings together Rubbing wings together
Activity Diurnal (active during the day) Nocturnal (active at night)
Diet Herbivore Omnivore

From this table, it is evident that their main differences lie in the length of their antennae, body shape, and their dietary habits. For example, grasshoppers have short and thick antennae, while crickets have long and thin ones. As for their body shapes, grasshoppers possess a cylindrical body, whereas crickets have a flattened top and bottom.

In terms of diet, grasshoppers are herbivores, feeding mainly on plants. On the other hand, crickets have a more diverse diet, as they are omnivores and can eat plants, insects, and even their own kind in some cases.

Lastly, while both creatures have strong hind legs built for jumping, their activity patterns differ. Grasshoppers are diurnal, which means they are active during the day. However, crickets are nocturnal, making them more active during the night.

Footnotes

  1. USDA APHIS

Reader Emails

Over the years, our website, whatsthatbug.com has received hundreds of letters and some interesting images asking us about these insects. Scroll down to have a look at some of them.

Letter 1 – Giant Grasshopper from Australia

 

Subject: Large Spotted Grasshopper
Location: Perth Western Australia
October 26, 2013 10:47 am
Hi my girlfriend spotted this guy hanging out on the side of our shed last night. The large size (7-8cm) of it intrigued me and repulsed her. I initially thought it to be a cricket but know believe it to be a grasshopper – possibly Valanga irregularis. We live in Perth, Western Australia. I snapped the photo on my Iphone and it was easily half the length of it. Any help with an ID would greatly be appreciated.
thanks in advance
Signature: Troy

Subject: Giant Spotted Grasshopper
Location: Perth, Western Australia
October 26, 2013 9:12 pm
Hi I don’t know if that pic I sent came out clear try this one.
Signature: Troy

Giant Grasshopper or Hedge Grasshopper
Giant Grasshopper or Hedge Grasshopper

Dear Troy,
Thanks so much for resending the photo.  The first was just a tiny thumbnail and it was impossible to make out the details.  We agree that this is most likely a Giant Grasshopper or Hedge Grasshopper,
Valanga irregularis, and you can verify that on the Australian Government Department of Agriculture page or the Brisbane Insect website.  We are postdating your submission to go live in early November while we are away from the office.

Letter 2 – Deceptive Stone Grasshopper from Spain

 

Subject: Grasshopper in Andalucia, Spain
Location: Mijas, Andalucia, Spain
March 16, 2017 11:57 pm
Hello,
this large grasshopper or cricket on the picture is quite common close to Malaga city. I see them when walking on open fields with bushes and rocky landscape, or small roads not far from the coast. I have tried to identify it but no success, can you maybe help?
Thanks,
Pasi
Signature: Grasshopper in Spain

Deceptive Stone Grasshopper

Dear Pasi,
We quickly identified your Grasshopper as a female Deceptive Stone Grasshopper,
Acinipe deceptoria, from the family Pamphagidae thanks to images posted on the Red List site for Threatened Species where this image is cached.  We verified the identification on Invertebrados Insectariumvirtual and on FlickR.  According to Orthoptera and their Ecology:  “Acinipe deceptoria inhabits dry and hot, often grazed mountain slopes whith open scrub in altitudes mostly between 400 and 1850m asl.”

Letter 3 – Giant Grasshopper from Costa Rica

 

Here is a picture of a huge bug in Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica
December 25, 2010 11:45 am
Any idea what it is?
Signature: BUG MAN

Giant Grasshopper

In its native habitat of Central and South America, this Giant Grasshopper, Tropidacris dux, is commonly called a Giant Brown Cricket though it is really a Grasshopper.  It is frequently mistaken for a bird in flight.  We can’t help but wonder how old this image is since it is a scanned medium format photographic image as opposed to a digitally captured original.

Thank you. This was actually taken very recently. I believe with an iPhone. A filter or digital treatment may have been applied. Thank you for your help!

Thanks for the clarification on the original photographic file.  We are intrigued with the way that traditional photography is mimicked, or better, counterfeited, through the use of special post production applications.  We first became aware of this fetishization of the image with post production in videos that allow for adding dust and scratches to capture the feel of nostalgic film since video does not scratch or contain dust.

Letter 4 – Giant Grasshoppers in Cancun

 

Hi there, great site!
I took this photo today of a grasshopper on the screen door of my Cancun house. I saw that someone else wrote to you a few weeks back with his own picture which was kind of distant, so I thought you might enjoy a closer shot. I have no idea what kind it is, but apparently they are pretty common this time of year (although I haven’t seen any quite THIS big) and come in brown and green.
Good job with your site, I have it bookmarked!
Grey Todd

Thanks Todd,
We can’t postively identify the species, but Paul can:

mexican grasshopper
(02/05/2005) Hi,
I study entomology at the University of Texas at El Paso and was browsing the web when I came across a picture on your site of a large mexican grasshopper that you didn’t have identified. I caught a specimen of the same genus in Guatemala this last summer. It is actually in the lubber family Romaleidae and the genus is Tropidacris which includes the largest grasshoppers on earth.
Paul Lenhart

Letter 5 – Elegant Grasshopper: A Bushlocust from South Africa

 

Yet another gaudy grasshopper
Hi,
How do you like this one ? I spotted it March 22nd 2008 in the Tala reserve near Durban, South Africa on a thistle flower not far from a large pond. I have no idea what the exact species is, but I’m sure its name should contain ‘splendissimus’ 🙂 Regards,
Patrick Lemli

Hi Patrick,
We have correctly identified your Gaudy Grasshopper as the Elegant Grasshopper, Zonocerus elegans, a Bushlocust, based on the content from a marvelous South African Orthoptera website. Once we had a name, we were able to locate other very nice images online.

Letter 6 – Crested Tooth Grinder from Australia

 

Crested Tooth-grinder
Mon, Dec 1, 2008 at 4:15 PM
Hi Guys,
Here is a strange one for you, a Crested Tooth-grinder, Ecphantus quadrilobus. This is a 4th instar nymph. While apparently widespread in Australia this is my first encounter with one. Here is a link http://140.247.119.138/albums/Album_1/source/10.html
with a bit more information. Hope you like this unusual guy.
aussietrev
Queensland, Australia

Crested Tooth-Grinder
Crested Tooth-Grinder

Hi Trevor,
What an interesting looking Grasshopper you have sent us for our archives.

Letter 7 – Dragon Lubber Grasshopper

 

Either a beetle or grasshopper
Location:  Julian, CA 92036
September 29, 2010 1:14 pm
Found this in the garage at our home in Julian CA….lived here 10 years and never seen this before……acts like a grasshopper the way it jumps
Signature:  Sam Clark

Dragon Lubber Grasshopper

Hi Sam,
We quickly identified your grasshopper on BugGuide as a Dragon Lubber in the genus
Dracotettix, a small group of species endemic to California.  Sadly, your photo does not show the crest which would be more visible from the side.

Letter 8 – Dragon Lubber Grasshopper, we believe

 

grasshopper?
Location: San Luis Obispo County, California
June 26, 2011 6:42 pm
I was hiking with some friends in Montana de Oro State Park here in California along the Central Coast when one of us spotted this grasshopper! We can’t find it online anywhere.
Signature: Howdy

Dragon Lubber Grasshopper

Hi Howdy,
We believe this is a Dragon Lubber Grasshopper in the genus
Dracotettix, however, its coloration does not match any photos posted to BugGuide.  All of the images on bugGuide are of the species Dracotettix monstrosus, and two other species are mentioned that are found in California, however they are not pictured.  We suspect this is either an unusual color variation or a different species in the genus.  We will check with Eric Eaton to get his opinion.

Dragon Lubber Grasshopper

It certainly does appear to be similar to the Dragon Lubber. I checked on BugGuide and did find two other species of Dracotettix, like you mentioned, but the pictures were included. There certainly are three color variations: http://bugguide.net/node/view/163571/bgimage None of them match the one I sent. The three of us who were hiking together are very anticipatory on information. What you provided was greatly appreciated and made us hopeful. We would be very excited if it is indeed a new species! It certainly does seem that it would fall under the Dracotettix genus if it is a new species. We are still very thankful for your time even if it has already been discovered.

Letter 9 – Egyptian Grasshopper

 

egyptian grasshopper? locust?
found this guy on a recent trip to the sinai desert in egypt. we bonded. love the site,
michael bailey

Hi Michael,
Thanks for sending in your photo a second time. We noticed it back in December, but were swamped. Then mail piles up and letters don’t get answered. We need a secretary. Sadly, we cannot identify your curious Orthopteran, but perhaps someone else will if we post it. ERic Eaton wrote in: ” The Egyptian grasshopper is likely in the Pyrgomorphidae, although most members of that family sport much brighter colors. So, I could be wrong about this specimen. The triangular head is pretty distinctive, though.”

Letter 10 – Egyptian Grasshopper from Spain

 

Subject:  Found in Seville
Geographic location of the bug:  Seville, Andalusia
Date: 10/22/2018
Time: 04:30 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Found this mighty bug flapping around in my office late one night. For reference my middle finger is a shade over 3.5 inches, so this rather sturdy grasshopper is close to 3 inches in length. I believed grasshoppers to prefer open plains to city centre life. I’ve certainly never seen one this large before.
How you want your letter signed:  Ben

Egyptian Grasshopper

Dear Ben,
We believe we have identified your Grasshopper as an Egyptian Grasshopper,
Anacridium aegyptum, thanks to The Insects of Southern Spain where it states:  “Egyptian Grasshoppers are sometimes mistaken for locusts, but the diagnostics for the former are the vertically striped eyes and the pronuptum, the shield type shape behind the head … is distinctly ridged, like plates of armour.”  Nightengale Trails has some nice images as does TrekNature.

Letter 11 – Female Plains Lubber

 

Subject: Grasshopper
Location: Sleigman, Arizona
October 10, 2016 9:06 pm
Saw this Grasshopper in Sleigman, AZ
It was very wide structure.
Signature: Sandie

Female Plains Lubber
Female Plains Lubber

Dear Sandie,
Your Grasshopper is a female Plains Lubber,
Brachystola magna, which we identified thanks to this image on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Large, colorful grasshopper. Flightless.  On the central and southern Great Plains, individuals reach their largest size, and are more often (especially females) predominantly green. In the Southwest they tend to be smaller, more varied in coloration, but most often predominantly brown.”

Letter 12 – Foaming Grasshopper from South Africa

 

Type of grasshopper?
October 10, 2009
Found this guy on the lawn in the botanical garden near Jo’burg. Quite brightly coloured. Looks like he’s part of the grasshopper family.
Sharon
Botanical garden, Johannesburg, SA

Foaming Grasshopper
Foaming Grasshopper

Hi Sharon,
This appears to be a Foaming Grasshopper or Koppie Foam Grasshopper, Dictyophorus spumans, one of the Toxic Milkweed Grasshoppers in the family Pyrgomorphidae.  The Toxic Milkweed Grasshoppers are also known as Gaudy Grasshoppers.

Letter 13 – Garden Locust, we believe, from South Africa

 

Subject: Pyrgomorphidae (Foam or Lubber Grasshoppers)??
Location: South Africa
May 10, 2014 12:37 am
Hello Bugman!
I’m back with a grasshopper question. I found this little beauty at Addo National Park in South Africa. Upon doing some research, it looks like he *may* be a Foam Grasshopper. After taking the photo, I could see he was foaming, which bums me out because I learned online that they foam when stressed or disturbed. This means, I was probably the cause of his stress. 🙁
Would love to hear your thoughts.
Cheers!
Signature: Kenda Swartz Pepper

Garden Locust
Garden Locust

Hi Kenda,
This is definitely not a Koppie Foam Grasshopper.  We believe it is a Garden Locust,
Acanthacris ruficornis subsp. ruficornis, which we quickly located on iSpot.  According to Beetles of Africa, it is “a very large grasshopper which can fly very well.  A very common species.”  There are also images on Natures World of Wonder South Africa.

Garden Locust
Garden Locust

Awesome and thank you, Daniel!
Only moments ago, I posted the information you sent and a shout-out to my readers to check out your site. http://www.travelsandtripulations.com/2014/05/11/endangered-bontebok/
Looks like I’ll be revisiting your site with a new image. While hiking today, we found a very cool striped beetle. I’ll send the image to see if you know what it is. I already looked on the links you sent with the grasshopper info and was unable to find it. Granted, our internet here is super slow, so iSpot wasn’t loading properly.
Many thanks and cheers,
Kenda

Letter 14 – Giant Grasshopper from Columbia: Tropidacris dux

 

Horror
Dear Sir – I found this bug on a public bathroom, as you can see it was hanging from the mirror edge. It was BIG, at least 6 inches long. Never seen one. Thanks
Martin Botero

Hi Martin,
This is the Giant Grasshopper from Central America and South America, Tropidacris dux. It is one of the Lubber Grasshoppers in the family Acrididae. Locally, the name translates to English as “Giant Brown Cricket”, but it is not a cricket. Your photo is gorgeous. We wish you had provided us with a location.

Sir- I took this photo near the town of Mariquita, in central Colombia. It is a very warm climate and more o less 1000 meters above sea level. I got close to the Giant Grasshopper and it did not move or try to fly away. I asked the people at that restaurant if they knew its name and no one had seen it before. Thank you for your information.
Martin Botero

Letter 15 – Gorgeous Painted Grasshopper

 

Subject: Unknown Grasshopper
Location: Texas Panhandle
August 10, 2014 2:31 pm
I would like any info on this grasshopper you may have.
Signature: Jody

Painted Grasshopper
Painted Grasshopper

Dear Jody,
This Painted Grasshopper,
Dactylotum bicolor, is positively gorgeous.  According to BugGuide, it is also called a Barber Pole Grasshopper.  BugGuide also notes:  “Female deposits eggs in soft soil in masses of about 100 eggs. She may lay up to twelve batches. Eggs overwinter and hatch late, usually later spring or early summer, so adults are present in late summer and into early fall. One generation per year.”

Letter 16 – Grasshopper

 

Unkown Texas Grasshopper
June 9, 2010
These grasshoppers, like the other grasshoppers in my neighborhood, appear in the summer and stay until fall. I call them ‘Chubbyhoppers’, due to their somewhat rounded appearance, but I have decided to find out what they are actually called. They appear in brown and green, and get about 1/2 inch to 1 and 3/4 inches long. They also appear to be a food for local katydids, as I saw a katydid eat one. I think these are nymphs, as they have underdeveloped wings, but I have seen winged versions of the same grasshopper. What is confusing, though, is I never see these winged ones longer than 1 inch. My picture of the brown form is clear, but the green one may be to blurry. Please help me find out what this grasshopper is called! (P.S. I am including a picture of the winged o ne, too.)
Robert
New Braunfels, Texas, USA

Grasshopper Nymph

Hi Robert,
We only have time to post your letter, and we will try to identify the species of these cute Grasshopper nymphs later.

Grasshopper Nymph

Letter 17 – Grasshopper from Argentina

 

Subject: Question about animal
Location: Argentina, Córdoba
December 30, 2014 6:54 am
Hi, Bugman,
Thanks for your free service. I would have two questions:
1. This photo shows a great bug, but I can’t distinguish if it is a grassphoper, a cricket, or what is that. How can distinguish between a grassphoper and a cricket?
2. Are there any insect photos databases, who buy and sell photos of insects?
Thanks for your time and help 🙂
David L
Signature: David L

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Dear David,
Grasshopper and Cricket are both common names in English for groups of insects in the order Orthoptera.  In North America, this insect is commonly called a Grasshopper from the suborder Caelifera.  We have tried unsuccessfully to identify it more specifically to a genus or species level, but the wrinkly area behind the head, the yellow antennae and the checkered legs are are distinctive features that should aid in a proper identification.  There are databases with stock photos of insects, but we have no connection to any of them.

Dear Daniel:
It’s quite comforting to know that there are people out there helping others with these kind of questions. Do please receive a salutation and wishes of HAPPY NEW YEAR, and many thanks for your answer, which invites us to explore further. It’s understandable that in North America you have species different from the ones that my Colombian friend found in Argentina.
Do please receive warmest regards from Bogotá, Colombia, South America…. Perhaps the first email of 2015??? 🙂

Update:  January 1, 2015
Thanks to a comment from Cesar Crash, we believe this is a member of the genus
Titanacris and we located this image that supports Cesar’s identification.

Hi, many thanks! I’ll forward this to my friend. A question: you say that someone called César Crash COMMENTED something… Is there a FORUM in your site, in which I can see this public discussion? I couldn’t find it on the site…. Where did César write? Thanks
David

Hello again David,
Cesar Crash is a long time contributor to our site who now runs a Brazilian site called Insetologia that is similar to What’s That Bug? and Cesar frequently helps us in South American identifications.  Each individual posting on our site is able to accept comments which our editorial staff then approves or disallows.  We generally approve all comments unless they are spam or otherwise totally inappropriate.  You can view all comments on this particular posting at 2014/12/31/grasshopper-argentina/

Letter 18 – Grasshopper from Australia

 

Subject: Large brown grasshopper/locust in the Pilbara
Location: Pilbara, Australia
February 8, 2014 7:02 pm
Hi there, I spotted this chap in the car park recently. About 6/8cms in length hand 1-1.5 in width.
Signature: Griffo

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Hi Griffo,
We quickly located a visual match on The Northern Myth blog where is it tentatively identified as being in the genus
 Urnisiella.  The individuals identified online as being in the genus Urnisiella do not look like your individual in our mind.  See FlickR and Superstock.  At this time, we are unable to provide a conclusive identification.  

Hi Daniel,
Thanks for your reply. I’ll have a read of the info. I did try to get a side profile photo, but I got spotted and he flew away.
All the best
Ian

Letter 19 – Grasshopper found in packaged raspberries

 

Subject: Insect in my raspberries
Location: Found in Glasgow, Scotland, raspberries originated in South Africa
February 6, 2015 8:11 am
On a shopping trip to tesco I bought raspberries which originated in South Africa. There was a green insect in the container, I’m just curious to know what it was! It was still alive too!
Signature: Curious raspberry lover

Immature Grasshopper
Immature Grasshopper

Dear Curious Raspberry Lover,
This is an immature Grasshopper.  Finding live insects in organically grown produces is not uncommon.

Letter 20 – Grasshopper found in Snow in Oregon

 

Subject: Grasshopper identification
Location: Pearsoll Peak, Kalmiopsis Wilderness, OR
March 21, 2016 10:05 am
Hi, I took photos of this grasshopper thawing in a snowbank at 4,000 feet elevation on 3/17/16. Located at Pearsoll Peak, Kalmiopsis Wilderness, SW Oregon. Its armor is camouflaged to the landscape of the area as there are a lot of sage plants & serpentine/chrome ore outcroppings of that color. Thanks!
Signature: Will

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Dear Will,
We haven’t the time to research the identity of your Grasshopper at this time, but we are posting the images.  Perhaps our readership can assist.  We will also contact Eric Eaton to get his opinion.

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Eric Eaton Responds
Daniel:
That is a nymph (juvenile, immature, “baby”) of a band-winged grasshopper, subfamily Oedipodinae in the Acrididae family.  I cannot make a more specific ID.
Eric
author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America
http://bugeric.blogspot.com/

Letter 21 – Garden Locust from Kenya

 

Subject: Locust-type critter
Location: Sengera, Kenya
January 15, 2013 5:32 am
The local people tried to scare me with this creature and popped him onto my desk while I was working. I didn’t jump and promptly encouraged him onto my hands before getting someone to take his pic before I released him. It looks like a plague-type creature that could obliterate crops, but I haven’t heard of any problems of them in this very tropical and green part of Kenya.
Signature: Ben Fiddes

Garden Locust

Hi Ben,
Locust is a name generally reserved for Grasshoppers that travel in swarms.  We have tried to identify this large Grasshopper to the species level, but we have not been successful.  We first found a matching image on this African Trails Travel Blog, but all that is mentioned is:  “Huge grasshopper found in the morning.”  We also located images on Jerbarker’s Grasshoppers and Crickets page, but it is only identified as “Grasshopper species (locust?), Tsavo NP, Kenya. December 2007.”  Perhaps we will eventually find a species identification for you.

Karl to the Rescue:  Garden Locust
Hi Daniel and Ben:
It looks like a Garden Locust (Acanthacris ruficornis). There are two subspecies: A. ruficornis citrina (sometimes referred to as the Migratory Bird Locust) is restricted to west-central Africa and Morocco; and, A. ruficornis ruficornis, which is common throughout Africa south of the Sahara.  Although it can be a pest on a variety of crops, it does not appear to be a swarming species. According to the Biodiversity Explorer: “In South Africa it is the common large brown grasshopper found in people’s gardens, often referred to erroneously as a locust (the term locust should be applied only to swarming species of grasshoppers).” It is consumed by people in some parts of Africa. Regards.  Karl

Letter 22 – Grasshopper and Mantis together in Korea

 

Subject:  Grasshopper on a mantis
Geographic location of the bug:  Korean field of Tanchon river
Date: 10/22/2017
Time: 06:27 AM EDT
Me and my Indian friend, Priyam were strolling for an walk when we saw a grasshopper on a mantis. No kidding, the mantis did’nt even bother to take the grasshopper of. We gently held it. Nor the grasshopper or the mantis tried to escape. What were these bugs doing??
How you want your letter signed:  By email

Mantis and Grasshopper

We believe this is most likely a chance encounter.  Mantids are well camouflaged among twigs and Grasshoppers rest on twigs.  This is a fascinating image.

Letter 23 – Crested Tooth Grinder and Two Unidentified Grasshoppers from Australia

 

Subject: Grasshopper from Alice Springs
Location: Alice Springs
November 21, 2016 2:26 pm
I found Three grasshopper at Alice Springs, Australia in February.
Can you help me identifying the Bugs.
If you can identify the Bugs, you may use the pictures on you homepage.
Signature: Just bug names

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Two of your Grasshoppers, the olive green and white striped individual and the green crested individual are both quite unique looking and we thought they might be easy to identify, but that has not proven to be the case.  They are not pictured on the Field Guide to Grasshoppers of Brisbane and South East Queensland, nor are they on Oz Animals which might mean their range is limited to the Northern Territory.  We will continue to research your Grasshoppers’ identities.  We are posting the images and perhaps one of our readers will have better luck than we have had.

Grasshopper
Grasshopper

Hi Daniel
Thank you for your try up to now. I am looking forward to hear from you again.
Regards
Henning

Grasshopper
Crested Tooth Grinder

Identification:  Thanks to a comment from Trevor, we now know that this is a Crested Tooth Grinder, Ecphantus quadrilobus, a species we already have in our archives and which is also pictured on iGoTerra and on FlickR.

Letter 24 – Egyptian Grasshopper from Israel

 

What is that? 🙂
January 4, 2010
We found it inside a log in the garden/ It didnt move at all for three days…..now it’s gone. All we have is the post I posted in my blog with the pictures and a need to know what it was….?
you can see the pictures in the link. thank you 🙂
Website    http://www.notes.co.il/chelli/63733.asp?p=0
chelli Goldenberg

Unknown Grasshopper from Israel
Egyptian Grasshopper

Dear chelli,
We don’t read Hebrew, so we couldn’t benefit from your blog posting.  The photos do not show the entire body of the insect, but the head appears to be that of a Grasshopper in the suborder Caelifera.  We are confused as to why it would have been inside a log as this is not the natural habitat nor the food for Grasshoppers.  We tried to search the web for information on Grasshoppers from Israel, but we did not find anything that remotely resembled this individual.

Dear Daniel
Thany you so much for answering me.
We were hoping it’s an alien me and my 14 years old daughter 🙂
I’v also wrote to Pro. lev Fishelson from Tea Aviv U – the
zoology faculty this morning, and he just wrote me that this is a young Anacridium aegyptium….
So now both of us have learn something new today:)
Thank you again 🙂
Chelli and Aya 🙂

Hi again Chelli,
Thank you for providing us with the scientific name of the Egyptian Grasshopper or Egyptian Locust.  We are linking to the Wildside Holidays page on this species as well as several amusing reports of residents from the UK finding Egyptian Grasshoppers in salads.  We are guessing we may hear from noted entomophagist David Gracer that Egyptian Grasshoppers are edible.

Authors

    by
  • Bugman

    Bugman aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. whatsthatbug.com is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

    View all posts
  • Piyushi Dhir

    Piyushi is a nature lover, blogger and traveler at heart. She lives in beautiful Canada with her family. Piyushi is an animal lover and loves to write about all creatures.

    View all posts

29 thoughts on “Cricket vs Grasshopper: Uncovering the Key Differences”

  1. Some experts would suggest caution about viewing any given insect species as edible unless their consumption is already documented. Others speak of animal trials or even biological logic: if it’s cryptic then that’s its defense — as opposed to toxins or other noxious chemistry.

    There are very few documented cases of people dying after eating grasshoppers, and they concerned brightly-colored species. Yet I know of one brightly colored grasshopper species that’s commonly eaten.

    Some grasshopper/locust species are classified as kosher, and there’s a lot that could be said about that. I recently had an unconfirmed report that Yemeni Jews have a particular tradition of grasshopper consumption, and I would love to learn more about that.

    Best wishes to all in the new year,

    Dave
    http://www.smallstockfoods.com

    Reply
  2. I believe that this is a Spur-Throated Locust (Austracris guttulosa), or a very closely related species. Although the colour is lighter when alive (as has been said in the original message), the markings and body shape match the species almost exactly.
    The taxonomy is as follows:
    Phylum: Arthropoda – Arthropods
    Class: Insecta – Insects
    Order: Orthoptera – Grasshoppers, Crickets, Katydids
    Suborder: Caelifera – Grasshoppers
    Family: Acrididae – Short-Horned Grasshoppers
    Tribe: Cyrtacanthacridini – Giant Spur-Throated Grasshoppers
    Genus: Austracris
    Species: A. guttulosa – Spur-Throated Locust

    Reply
  3. Hi we have had this dude grasshopper in our vege patch since Christmas 2014 he/she is 7 to 8 cm long. Gone from green with amasing blue eyes to huge and brown. We heard because of the long hot summer that they would have a (second) longer life span Question do we know there actual normal life span is we are in Mooloolaba Qld so temper ant. I don’t mind the rhubarb leaves or mint it eats but bugger of my broad beans

    Reply
  4. Hi guys,
    Way back in 2008 I sent you pictures and details of the Crested Tooth Grinder (Ecphantus quadrilobus. Pretty sure that is what is pictured as the third species.

    Reply
  5. Hi guys,
    Way back in 2008 I sent you pictures and details of the Crested Tooth Grinder (Ecphantus quadrilobus. Pretty sure that is what is pictured as the third species.

    Reply
  6. I just accidentally killed a 5 in grasshopper while burning debris in my yard. I speared it with a metal rake. I’m in Esterrios Oeste. I have pictures.

    Reply
  7. We found one whilst on holiday in Mijas, unfortunately being attacked by wasps. We tried to rescue the poor thing but the ants got ahold of him/her over night.
    I’ve since found this post and it’s a shame to hear that they are on the endangered list.

    Reply
  8. We found one whilst on holiday in Mijas, unfortunately being attacked by wasps. We tried to rescue the poor thing but the ants got ahold of him/her over night.
    I’ve since found this post and it’s a shame to hear that they are on the endangered list.

    Reply
  9. Hi Ben
    I am David, ranger at Kilimanjaro National Park. I really liked the good work you are doing to assist us in identification of these beautiful creatures.
    I have photographed presumably Garden Grasshopper at Marangu gate (1876m) on 13/1/2018. As I was try to identify, I find this very useful and interesting page.
    Thanks

    Reply
  10. Hi Ben
    I am David, ranger at Kilimanjaro National Park. I really liked the good work you are doing to assist us in identification of these beautiful creatures.
    I have photographed presumably Garden Grasshopper at Marangu gate (1876m) on 13/1/2018. As I was try to identify, I find this very useful and interesting page.
    Thanks

    Reply
  11. Hola,
    Today we also found one on the property below Mijas Pueblo. We’ve put it in the garden away from preying bird’s view.

    Reply
  12. Hola,
    Today we also found one on the property below Mijas Pueblo. We’ve put it in the garden away from preying bird’s view.

    Reply
  13. Hi!! I’m in Caboolture, not far up the highway from you guys and I have just had on winter with us. He was enjoying eating the leaves on my wisteria before winter. He just waited out for my beautiful blooms to start to pop before he proceeded to start eating them! That was the last straw. My precious wisteria, that I am trying to grow over a fence, was now being threatened by this monster (as he was huge!!!). I finally had enough today and caught him in a jar and took him for a drive out to Wamuran!!! He can find some yummy foliage out there. I was worried he’d find his way back if I didn’t make it a decent distance. Couldn’t bring myself to killing him. Especially since my husband and son gave me heaps about keeping in the jar!

    I hope he lives out his days finding all the foliage he can stuff his face with!!! ?

    Reply
  14. Hi!! I’m in Caboolture, not far up the highway from you guys and I have just had on winter with us. He was enjoying eating the leaves on my wisteria before winter. He just waited out for my beautiful blooms to start to pop before he proceeded to start eating them! That was the last straw. My precious wisteria, that I am trying to grow over a fence, was now being threatened by this monster (as he was huge!!!). I finally had enough today and caught him in a jar and took him for a drive out to Wamuran!!! He can find some yummy foliage out there. I was worried he’d find his way back if I didn’t make it a decent distance. Couldn’t bring myself to killing him. Especially since my husband and son gave me heaps about keeping in the jar!

    I hope he lives out his days finding all the foliage he can stuff his face with!!! ?

    Reply
  15. Great web site…..
    We have had a deceptive stone grasshopper on our terrace for a few days now, (Mijas Pueblo), wouldn’t have id’d it without your info, thanks

    Reply
  16. Great web site…..
    We have had a deceptive stone grasshopper on our terrace for a few days now, (Mijas Pueblo), wouldn’t have id’d it without your info, thanks

    Reply
  17. A very large green grasshopper flew onto out 7th-floor balcony this week while in Cancun. We’d never seen one that large. I have a good photo that I can share for identification.

    Reply

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