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Species Hippiscus ocelote - Wrinkled Grasshopper

Grasshopper - Hippiscus ocelote - female leopard print/camoflage print grasshopper - Hippiscus ocelote - male Almost Ready to Earn its Wings - Hippiscus ocelote - female Thick bodied grasshopper with enlarged head - Hippiscus ocelote - female Is this a wrinkled grasshopper (Hippiscus ocelote)? - Hippiscus ocelote - male Grasshopper - Hippiscus ocelote - female Red-shanked Grasshopper - Hippiscus ocelote - female Cool grasshopper bug? - Hippiscus ocelote - female
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Orthoptera (Grasshoppers, Crickets, Katydids)
Suborder Caelifera (Grasshoppers)
Family Acrididae (Short-horned Grasshoppers)
Subfamily Oedipodinae (Band-winged Grasshoppers)
Tribe Hippiscini
Genus Hippiscus
Species ocelote (Wrinkled Grasshopper)
Other Common Names
Clumsy Grasshopper
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Oedipoda (Hippiscus) ocelote Saussure, 1861, from Cordova, Mexico
Hippiscus ocelote (Saussure) Thomas, 1873
Oedipoda rugosa Scudder, 1862, from Massachusetts
Hippiscus rugosus (Scudder) Scudder, 1874
Hippiscus compactus Scudder, 1892, from Carolina and Maryland
Hippiscus suturalis Scudder, 1892, from Moline, Rock Island County, Illinois
Hippiscus variegatus Scudder, 1892, from Pennsylvania and Georgia
Hippiscus citrinus Scudder, 1901, from Alabama
Hippiscus immaculatus Morse, 1906, from Clarendon, Texas
Explanation of Names
Hippiscus ocelote (Saussure, 1861)

This is one of those with common names that seem a bit "off". The common name came from the species name that was in use at the time, but not quite interpreted right; so. the common name doesn't really fit very well. [The species name, a synonym, was "rugosus".] That species name actually referred to the roughened, sometimes ridged upper surface of the pronotum. This is one of the smoothest and least "wrinkled" of the Band-winged Grasshoppers.
The common name "Clumsy Grasshopper" is perhaps a little more appropriate, since egg-ladden females are sometimes very lubberly and clumsy in their movenments. However, when they are in their prime and the weather is warm they are usually anything but clumsy, and are very powerful fliers.
males: 28-40 mm, females: 39-53 mm
Heavy bodied, with large rounded head, nearly smooth on top between eyes. Pronotum rough on top, often with low irregular raised parallel ridges toward the rear; with median ridge cut once at middle. Usually gray and brown with a lighter "X" mark on dorsum of pronotum; with pale lines along upper edges of folded tegmina; and with tegmina panther-spotted. Hind wings yellow, orange, red, or pink with a dark curved band running around outer edge and with a dark spur from this band near the front margin of the wing. Tip of wing usually clear, sometimes with some dark coloring mostly along the veins.
Most like Pardalophora, which species all have the median ridge of the pronotum cut well forward of the middle, and have smaller heads usually more strongly sculptured on top between eyes. These are usually found as adults in spring, and overwinter as nymphs. The hind tibiae may be bright orange or red in some species.
Xanthippus is like Pardalophora, but also has the median ridge of the pronotum cut twice (both cuts are well in front of middle). Where they occur with Hippiscus, species of Xanthippus usually have the hind tibiae and inner side of the hind femur bright orange to red.
Camnula is similar, but proportioned more like Pardalophora, much smaller, and has clear little pigmented wings. Mostly found further north and/or at higher elevations.
e. US to AZ - Map (1)
Grasslands, pastures, meadows; areas that would be considered relatively dry with short grass in the east but would be considered moist and lush in the west.
mostly: July-Oct. (BG data)
Grasses, and probably some herbaceous dicots as well. Will scavenge dead animal material as well, and may be somewhat cannibalistic under some circumstances.
Life Cycle
Overwinters as eggs. Adults mostly July or August into October or November in much of range, sometimes through winter in south. August-frost (North Carolina).
A large late season species with brightly colored wings. Males are usually active, alert, and difficult to approach or catch. Females are usually powerful fliers as well, but may rely on camouflage, taking to the air only as a last resort. Once they do fly, they can be difficult to catch up with and approach too. This species does not crepitate in flight, but it is large and produces a rustling sound as it flies simply due to air movement. A large female flying up unexpectedly can be quite startling.

Commonly comes to bright lights at night.
See Also
Red-shanked Grasshopper - Xanthippus corallipes
Haldeman's Grasshopper - Pardalophora haldemanii
Print References
Capinera, Field Guide to Grasshoppers..., pp. 92-93, plate 15 (2)
Capinera, Grasshoppers of Florida, pp. 66-67, plates 44-45 (3)
Helfer, pp. 118-119, fig. 196 (4)
Brimley, p. 24 (5)
Works Cited
1.Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)
2.Field Guide To Grasshoppers, Katydids, And Crickets Of The United States
John L. Capinera, Ralph D. Scott, Thomas J. Walker. 2004. Cornell University Press.
3.Grasshoppers of Florida (Invertebrates of Florida)
John L. Capinera, Clay W. Scherer, Jason M. Squiter, Jason M. Squitier. 2002. University Press of Florida.
4.How to Know the Grasshoppers, Cockroaches, and Their Allies
Jacques R. Helfer. 1962. Wm. C. Brown Company.
5.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.