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armed field cricket

Gryllus armatus Scudder 1902

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map composite map males male
44 s of calling, from Eddy County, N. Mex., 25.1°C. Dominnant frequency 4.6 kHz. Recording by D.B. Weissman (S15-58, R15-177); used by permission. Click on sound bar to hear entire recording.
This sound spectrogram is a 10 s excerpt of the 43 s audio file accessible above. The excerpt begins at 10 s. Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Sound spectrogram showing first 4 chirps of 10 s sample above. Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Sound spectrogram showing first chirp of 2 s sample above, slowed to 1/10th speed to make apparent the introductory trill that some males of this species make. Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Song: Weissman and Gray (2019) described the song as bursts of several chirps usually with an introductory trill that has 2–8 evenly spaced pulses, which are followed by a series of 1–3 (usually 2) pulse chirps. Pulse rate >70 at 25°C.
Identification: Small to medium cricket. Shiny, black head and pronotum, tegmina beige. Wings are always long. A key to the adult males of native US Gryllus is in Weissman and Gray (2019).
DNA: DNA analysis shows G. armatus to be sister species to G. integer and that the two species may hybridize in the Four Corners area. For more information about DNA testing, see Weissman and Gray (2019).
Similar species: G. integer has a similar song but (usually) lacks the introductory trill that is characteristic of G. armatus; as well, their distributions are mostly seperate, except around the Four Corners area. These species can also be differentiated by DNA. G. texensis has short wings (G. armatus always has long wings), and the wings are not clearly two-toned.
Range: Southwest and southcentral United States.
Habitat: Watered lawns, dumps, gas stations, cracks in concrete, dry ground, and dry ponds and lake beds.
Life cycle: Two generations per year; possibly only one generation in a year under drought conditions. No egg diapause.
Season: Spring into summer.
Remarks: As early as 1980 David B. Weissman began publishing the results of his field and laboratory studies of the Gryllus of the United States and Canada (Weissman et al. 1980). By 2003, David Gray had started his cooperation with Weissman by providing genetic analysis of the living Gryllus made available by Weissman's studies (e.g., Weissman, Walker, and Gray 2009). Weissman and Gray's manuscript regarding the Gryllus of US and Canada was published in Zootaxa on 5 December 2019. [The manuscript will soon be made available.]
Name derivation: Latin: "arma" = "weapons", "atus" = "provided with"; in reference to the spines on the hind tibia.
More information:
subfamily Gryllinae, genus Gryllus
References: Weissman and Gray 2019
Nomenclature: OSF (Orthoptera Species File Online)
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