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thorny hopper - Umbonia crassicornis - female

thorny hopper - Umbonia crassicornis - Female
Frontera Audubon, Weslaco, Hidalgo County, Texas, USA
November 25, 2007

Umbonia crassicornis
A female - in males, the spine is flat-topped. This tropical species has been recorded from Florida and (incorrectly - in 1917) from Ohio, but not yet from Texas.

There are known previous south Texas Records...
See here

TX records
Those are impressive photos. Unfortunately, there is not a definite statement that they were taken in Hidalgo Co., TX. It is merely implied by the photographer's address.

The south Texas location is clearly stated...
University Dr. & U.S. Hwy 281,
Edinburg, Hidalgo Co., TX
October 19, 2004 (B Bouton)

Plus, I've seem them there with my own eyes... Mike

Long ago, but nearby
These were abundant on shrubs around Lamar Junior High School in McAllen, Texas (Hidalgo County), when I was a student there, in the late 1950s. None of us knew what they were, but we discovered that it was safe to pick them up by the scary-looking "thorn," and then they would release a stream of clear liquid (you can imagine the giggles). Boys would try to make them do this on the girls, and they were occasionally smuggled into classrooms to be released into someone's desk, purse, or other useful location. One particular shrub (I don't know what it was, either) had more than others.

The study of local nature had no part in the curriculum (our teachers didn't know any of the local birds, let alone bugs) so it was years before I even knew they were treehoppers.

Looks to be a member of the Umbonia genus.

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