Eastern Lubber Hatchling

Subject: Red Hopper
Location: Southern Alabama, USA
May 6, 2013 12:32 pm
My friends and I found a group of small, red insects on a hiking trail. We were in Conecuh National Forest, a little south of Andalusia, Alabama on May 5, 2013. The insects couldn’t have been more than half an inch long. They had a yellow stripe running down their back, and they had no wings. We believe they might be some kind of juvenile grasshopper. Can you help us solve the mystery? If these aren’t fully grown, what will the adult version look like? Thank you!
Signature: Jack McDonald

Eastern Lubber Hatchling
Eastern Lubber Hatchling

Dear Jack,
This is a recently hatched Eastern Lubber Grasshopper, Romalea microptera.  When fully grown, they get quite large and they have small wings so they are flightless.  They can get very numerous, and they are found in both a black color variation and an orange-yellow color variation.  You can compare your image to this photo on BugGuide.  There is also a wealth of information available on BugGuide.

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