Thursday, June 10, 2010

Katydid Like the Truck



There are about 250 different  species of katydids in North America and others around the world. The males call loudly to attract females during summer evenings. As with crickets, the air temperature can be determined by carefully counting the calls in a minute and then using a little formula. Upon hearing the calls with ears in their front LEGS(!) the females merely chirp in response and seek out a male whose call has that certain appeal.  Interestingly, her body temperature and his have to be the same, or she does not recognize him as one of her own kind. Katydids usually eat plant material, sometimes nectar and pollen and, occasionally, are carnivores of other insects, snails ---and even lizards and snakes. In Uganda, they are known as bush-crickets and are consumed by hungry people.


Katydids can bite, so be gentle --or simply watch.

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