Species Leptysma marginicollis - Cattail Toothpick Grasshopper
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 Leptysminae (Spur-throat Toothpick Grasshoppers)
Species marginicollis (Cattail Toothpick Grasshopper)
Explanation of Names
At Words by William Whitaker
, "collis" translates to "head and neck", while "margini" translates to "margin" or "border". This could be referring to the stripe on the head and thorax of this species.
3 subspecies, with 2 of these occurring in the U.S.
Males: 28-31 mm, females: 31-38 mm in length.
This slender, elongate grasshopper has a very pointed head and flattened, sword-shaped antennae. Thus, it superficially resembles grasshoppers in the subfamily Gomphocerinae
, but is easily distinguished by the presence of a spur, or spine, between the front legs.
They are usually brownish with a whitish, yellow, or brown stripe from the eye to the base of the front legs. The head is as long as, or longer than, the pronotum. On top, the body may also be reddish or pinkish. The front wings are sharply pointed, extending 3-5 mm beyond the tip of the abdomen (1) (2)
Southern U.S., Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Guatemala.
Inhabits wet areas, and is usually found on emergent vegetation such as cattails and sedges.(1)
Apparently found in any stage throughout the year. Adults tend to be common in early spring.
is easily confused with Leptysma marginicollis
(Serville), but in L. marginicollis
the head is as long as, or longer than, the pronotum whereas in S. vitreipennis
the head is shorter than the pronotum. The antennal segments, although flattened, are not nearly as wide as in L. marginicollis.
Capinera, Grasshoppers of Florida
, pp. 87-88, plate 71 (1)
Capinera, Field Guide to Grasshoppers...
, pp. 114-115, plate 30 (2)
Arnett, American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico (3)
, p. 175
Try the "Grasshoppers of Florida" key/pdf file (4)
has images of adults.
The Great Plains Nature Center
lists L. marginicollis
in its list "Insects of Kansas".
|1.||Grasshoppers of Florida (Invertebrates of Florida)|
John L. Capinera, Clay W. Scherer, Jason M. Squiter, Jason M. Squitier. 2002. University Press of Florida.
|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.