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Species Capnobotes fuliginosus - Sooty Longwing

Sooty winged katydid - Capnobotes fuliginosus - male Las Vegas, NV, backyard grasshopper. Seen morning and evening on sides of building or in vegetation - Capnobotes fuliginosus - male Shield-back Katydid male--possibly Idiostatus sp? - Capnobotes fuliginosus - male Tettigoniinae ? - Capnobotes fuliginosus - female Desert Katydid? - Capnobotes fuliginosus - male Sooty Longwing, spread dorsal - Capnobotes fuliginosus Capnobotes fuliginosus - female Sooty Longwing - Capnobotes fuliginosus - Capnobotes fuliginosus
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Orthoptera (Grasshoppers, Crickets, Katydids)
Suborder Ensifera (Long-horned Orthoptera)
Infraorder Tettigoniidea (Katydids, Camel Crickets, and relatives)
Family Tettigoniidae (Katydids)
Subfamily Tettigoniinae (Shield-backed Katydids)
Genus Capnobotes
Species fuliginosus (Sooty Longwing)
Other Common Names
Sooty-winged Katydid
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Locusta fuliginosus C. Thomas, 1872. Type locality: northern Arizona.
Capnobotes fuliginosus (Thomas) Scudder, 1897
Large Kaydid with long wings. Tegmina narrow, marked with rows of pale rounded spots. Hind wings dark sooty gray to nearly black (sometimes coloring is broken, but wing is still mostly dark).

Very similar to C. occidentalis and overlapping ranges northward (mostly in Mojave, southern Great Basin and Colorado Plateus). In that species there are fewer large light spots on the tegmina (usually fewer than 10 in the daigonal series that runs along the middle) and the hind wings are nearly clearly and only somewhat smokey. C. fuliginosus has not been recorded as having a green form, and is (?always?) gray to gray-brown in overall body coloring.

The male's calling song is a rapid continuous chirping or trilling, broken at somewhat irregular intervals, not particularly loud nor harsh, but clearly audible. The individual "chirps" are much closer together than in C. occidentalis, and so sound like an almost continuous pulsing sound.
Southwestern U.S.; northern limits in Nevada, Utah, and Colorado.
Mostly in desert, and found in a variety of shrub species.
Nymphs appear as early as March or even February (depending on local climate). Adults seem most abundant in spring and early summer, first appearing in late April, May, or June, depending upon climate and seasonal weather; becoming uncommon by August. However, some often survive into autumn or even early winter.

In years with extremely dry spring weather, nymphs may not appear until later, in which case adults may not first appear until July or even August, and then are also more likely to survive later into the year.
Apparently omnivorous, and capable of feeding on a number of plant species and families. However, the species definitely shows carnivorous tendencies, and can be watched hunting in shrubs at night with a flashlight. Both nymphs and adults are attracted to lights and capture and eat other insects that come to the lights.
Care in handling is recommended. These are wonderful, basically harmless insects, but they can bite (hard!).
Print References
Capinera et al., p. 189, plate 42 (1)
Works Cited
1.Field Guide To Grasshoppers, Katydids, And Crickets Of The United States
John L. Capinera, Ralph D. Scott, Thomas J. Walker. 2004. Cornell University Press.