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Meadow Katydid - Conocephalus nigropleurum - male

Meadow Katydid - Conocephalus nigropleurum - Male
DuPage County, Illinois, USA
August 22, 2002
Size: Body, 12mm antennae, 20mm

(Edited) Thanks, you two. I've had this critter in my "to ID" files for 3 years now.

Male Conocephalus sp. katydid.
This is a nice portrait of a male of one of the slender meadow katydids in the genus Conocephalus. Someone might eventually be able to get this to a species, BUT, the characters we need to see are out of focus. Those tail-like projections, called "cerci" are different in each species. Some are toothed, some smooth, some contorted, some straight, etc.

Conocephalus nigropleurum
Aha! Very interesting coloration on this one, and the cerci, though out of focus, clearly have a broad, triangular tooth on the side. Looking through the Conocephalus cerci at SINA, I was immediately drawn to click on the cerci of black-sided meadow katydid, Conocephalus nigropleurum, which has that broad lateral triangle. The coloration of the adults looks distinctive--dark sides to the abdomen. Also, the range is correct--includes Illinois. Short-winged, C. brevipennis, has similar cerci, but the coloration is green and brown, nothing like the dark abdomen on this photo.

I feel like we have a winner here--I'm convinced enough to move to a guide.

Patrick Coin
Durham, North Carolina

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