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western tree cricket

Oecanthus californicus Saussure 1874

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map brown male brown male calling pale male
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pale male pictipennis male pictipennis male pictipennis male
19 s of calling song; male from Webb Co., Tex.; 24.0°C. (WTL586-11c)
 Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Sound spectrogram of 2 s of calling at 24.0°C (from WTL586-11). Dominant frequency 3.9 kHz.
Song at 25°C: Continuous, musical trill at 57? p/s and 3.8? KHz.
Song data: Excel worksheet and chart (from spectrographic analyses).
Identification: Length 14–18 mm.
Similar species: Texas tree cricket—except for differences in the calling song and distribution ???
Habitat: Shrubby vegetation and low trees.
Season: Late May to November in s. Arizona; August until frost in Oregon; one generation annually in most, if not all, of range.
Remarks: The crickets above that are labeled pictipennis are like those described by Morgan Hebard (1935) as the subspecies Oecanthus californicus pictipennis. The taxonomic status of these crickets is uncertain, but it seems likely that pictipennis will prove to be specifically distinct from californicus. This is because pictipennis does not conform to the usual concept of subspecies (geographic race). Individuals of the typical, all-dusky-green coloration occur in some of the same geographic areas as the pictipennis coloration. Tree crickets of the pictipennis coloration occur only on juniper and pinyon pine, where, as the pictures demonstrate, their coloration makes them less conspicuous.
More information:
genus Oecanthus, subfamily Oecanthinae.
References: Fulton 1926b; Walker 1962, 1967; Walker & Gurney 1967. Collins 2010-date.
Nomenclature: OSF (Orthoptera Species File Online)
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