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Photo#467630
Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - female

Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - Female
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, San Diego County, California, USA
October 11, 2010
Size: 30 mm to tip of wing
This grasshopper was hanging out between the stems of Snakeweed near Sentenac Cienega. It possibly is a spur-throat and I think it is a female. The head is held quite high and the eyes are somewhat angular and rimmed with a fine white line. Any help will be much appreciated.

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Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - female Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - female Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - female Dark Grasshopper - Melanoplus complanatipes - female

She is one of the slender Composite shrub-feeding Melanoplus.
On the desert side of the mountains she should be M. complanatipes. The difference from M. cinereus is trivial, and they are probably just geographic variants of the same species (intermediates occur where the distributions meet). Favorite hosts include things like Baccharis, Artemisia, Chrysothamnus, and other shrubs in Asteraceae - and yes - sometimes Snakeweed too. Generally they are most common in sandy areas (but not always).

Moved from ID Request.

 
Melanoplus complanatipes
A new grasshopper for our survey! Thanks so much for the identification, David. We really appreciate your help with this handsome Melanoplus female.

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