Immature Katydid from South Africa

Subject:  Cricket identification
Geographic location of the bug:  Piet Retief, Mpumalanga,  South Africa
Date: 01/08/2018
Time: 08:15 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I spotted this insect on the grass under a large paperback acacia thorn tree. It is almost the same colour of the lichen on the tree ( see photograph). I thought it was a grasshopper but now think it is a cricket. It is small (2cm).
How you want your letter signed:  Lynn Volker

Lichen Mimicking Katydid

Dear Lynn,
Even though immature Katydids can often visually differ greatly from adult Katydids, and given that there are more images of identified adult Katydids on the World Wide Web than there are of frequently undocumented immature stages, and we acknowledge that though they share some visual similarities including looking like lichens, we do not believe your (probably) immature Katydid nymph to be the same species as this South African individual pictured on Photographs from South Africa.  We are going to attempt to contact Katydid expert Piotr Naskrecki to see if he recognizes your comely specimen.

Piotr Naskrecki provides an identification.
Hi Daniel,
This is a nymph of Eurycorypha sp. (possibly E. varia).
Piotr Naskrecki, Ph. D.
Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University

Ed. Note:  We located images attributed to the genus Eurycorypha on Africa Wild, but the adult looks nothing like this gorgeous nymph.

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