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Cricket - Gryllus

Cricket - Gryllus
The Woodlands, Montgomery County, Texas, USA
August 8, 2006
Our first cricket, so we really have nothing to go on. Thanks in advance for information about crickets, or help with the ID.

Moved from Field Crickets.

Southwestern or Southeastern Field Cricket
Well, I followed Heimchen's links, and looked into species for this cricket, and found that both the Gryllus rubens Southeastern field cricket, and the Gryllus texensis Southwestern field cricket occur in our area. The online resource from University of Florida, found here, says: "The southwestern field cricket cannot be distinguished from the southeastern field cricket except by analysis of the pulse rate of the male’s calling song (=wingstroke rate during the trill). At 77 degrees F the southwestern field cricket has a pulse rate that is greater than 62. If the two species are singing at the same time and place, a trained ear can identify the crickets that are trilling at the faster pulse rate as southwestern field crickets." I do not have a trained ear, and do not have both specimens trilling in front of me, so I don't think I'll be able to narrow it down further. (If you ask me, if the only difference between the two is trill speed, they aren't a different species, one just has a Texas drawl . . .)

Adult Female Field Cricket
I'm pretty sure that this is a field cricket, a fully-adult female, but which species is the question! Her rather dilute-looking, reddish brown hues make me think she molted just a few hours ago and is still in the process of colouring up. If so, she likely won't end up an all-black cricket--the most common one in my region, Gryllus pennsylvanicus, molts out a bright tan colour initially, then darkens through a distinctive, almost puce-coloured phase...even if the individual ends up on the light end of the 'black' scale, with distinctly brown legs, cerci, etc, they never look reddish or this variable in their shading. So maybe one of the browner species? There are a couple of possibilites in your region...try having a look at the Texas Field Cricket (Gryllus texensis) and the similar Southeastern Field Cricket (Gryllus rubens). Both have short-winged forms and seem to be what's most common and of about the right general look. One last note: I thought at first that this cricket had unusually shaped upper wings that might help ID her, but on looking more closely, I now swear that somebody's chewed the very ends of them off! (Her antennae don't look in very good shape either.) Maybe that's why she's in the water. She's drowning her sorrows and steadying her nerves after a fright.

Link to more cricket info:

Thanks for the help!
Heimchen, I really appreciate all the information you included in your post. For now I'm moving this image to the field cricket genus page, and I'm going to look at the species you suggested, and see if I can narrow it down. Thanks again!

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