Species Phyllopalpus pulchellus - Handsome Trig
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Orthoptera (Grasshoppers, Crickets, Katydids)
Suborder Ensifera (Long-horned Orthoptera)
Infraorder Gryllidea (Crickets)
Subfamily Trigonidiinae (Winged Bush Crickets, Trigs)
Species pulchellus (Handsome Trig)
Other Common Names
Red-headed Bush Cricket
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Phyllopalpus pulchellus Uhler
Explanation of Names
pulchellus-pretty or beautiful
1 species in this genus in the U.S.
Distinctive appearance. Red head/throrax, pale legs, dark bluish-black forewings. Last segment of palp is black and oval flattened shape. Female forewings are convex similar to beetles. (1)
Song (of male) is a "rattling, broken trill" (2)
, given both day and night.
Left wing of male is clear (2)
, apparently modified for stridulation.
Southeast U.S. north to Massachusetts, excluding South Florida. (3)
Found in vegetation near streams and marshes, about a meter above the ground. (1)
Single generation; adults begin to appear in July/early August. (1)
Speculation (P. Coin/Cotinis)
Perhaps Batesian mimics
of Bombardier Beetles, Brachinus
, and relatives:
The color scheme is a match, broadly, and the dark basal antenna segments contribute to the appearance of beetle mandibles. The enlarged tips of the palps, when held up, resemble the dark eyes of the beetle. Folded forewings of female are convex, "beetle-like" (1)
, and striated.
Another hypothesis, not mutually exclusive, is that the prominent, and mobile, palps represent mimicry of jumping spiders, Salticidae
Capinera remarks that there are no similar species in the U.S. (1)
Capinera, pp. 202-203 & plate 44 (1)
Elliott and Hershberger, pp. 90-91, CD track 24 (2)
Helfer, pp. 331-332, fig. 529 (4)
Rannels et al., CD track 39 (5)
Singing Insects of North America--handsome trig
MacRae, Ted (2014). Beetles in the Bush
--My, what busy palps you have!
Nasrecki, Piotr (2012). The Smaller Majority
--Red-headed Bush Cricket, part 2
|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.
|2.||The Songs of Insects|
Lang Elliott, Wil Hershberger. 2007. Houghton Mifflin.
|5.|| Songs of Crickets and Katydids of the Mid-Atlantic States|
Steve Rannels, Wil Hershberger and Joseph Dillon. 1998. (authors).