Thursday, August 27, 2009

Black-Legged Meadow Katydid

This pretty katydid is the Black-Legged Meadow Katydid (Orchelimum nigripes). They occur west of the Appalachians and are found throughout the mid-west states. This one was photographed in my backyard last night on some blooming 4 O'clock plants. Their coloring is so dramatic, and those black legs make identifying them easy. They reach lengths up to 1 1/2 inches and are various shades of green, bright yellow, and reddish brown. Look for them in meadows, (hence the name), gardens, prairies and wetland areas. The male will sing from low in the vegetation to attract a nearby female. Once the female is mated she will lay eggs within plant tissue or sometimes in the soil. The young nymphs are born looking very much like their adult counterparts, with exception of no wings and being much smaller in size. The adults and the nymphs both feed on a wide variety of grasses and plants. Just like cicadas and other singing insects the black-legged katydid has its own distinct song, and can be identified by melody alone. It can be a challenge to learn all the different songs from each individual specimen that contributes to the nature chorus, but if you want to impress your friends this is a sure way to do it.


  1. Nice post and photos.
    I liked this a lot.
    A favorite site here.

    Thanks for the visit,

    to answer your question,
    Go visit,
    Going to the Sun Road, Glacier N.P..

  2. Thank you so much for your kind comments. Thanks also for providing the link to Sun Road Glacier NP. That place is stunning.

  3. Not sure if my last comment worked...Great shots!

  4. Thanx Moe, I appreciate the feedback. These are amazing katydids their coloring is unsurpassed in this area.