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west coast spring field cricket

Gryllus veletisoides Weissman & Gray 2019

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map holotype male female male
45 s of calling, from Santa Clara County, Calif., 25°C. Dominant frequency 4.8 kHz. Recording by D.B. Weissman (S06-30, R06-21); used by permission. Click on sound bar to hear entire recording.
This sound spectrogram is a 10 s excerpt of the 45 s audio file accessible above. The excerpt begins at 18 s. Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Sound spectrogram showing first 6 chirps of 10 s sample above. Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Song: Slow, irregular chirp. 4-5 (range 3-6) pulses per chirp. Pulse rate 21-30 at 25°C.
Identification: Medium cricket, usually black, wide pronotum, tegmina sometimes brown. Occasionally the inside of the hind femur will have reddish color. Short hind wings. Cerci short (<10 mm) and never as long as ovipositor. A key to the adult males of native US Gryllus is in Weissman and Gray (2019).
DNA: DNA analyses show G. veletisoides to be phylogenetically close to G. chisosensis and G. montis but distant from G. veletis (even though G. veletisoides and G. veletis are very similar in morphology and song). For more information about DNA testing, see Weissman and Gray (2019).
Similar species: Gryllus veletisoides has a longer ovipositor and shorter cerci than G. brevicaudus and lacks a yellow-orange tinged area on the lateral tegmina field that is often found on G. brevicaudus, especially males. Gryllus veletisoides has fewer file teeth and a faster pulse rate than G. pennsylvanicus. Gryllus veletisoides has shorter cerci and fewer file teeth than G. saxatilis. These three species overlap in distribution with Gryllus veletisoides. Gryllus veletisoides and G. veletis are very similar morphologically but can be distinguished by the number of teeth in the file (G. veletisoides with relatively more teeth than G. veletis), by DNA analysis, and by distribution. Gryllus veletis is always east of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Mountain Ranges, and G. veletisoides is to the west.
Range: California's Central Valley and the western foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.
Habitat: On sandy substrate, usually in moist environmnts, such as open meadows, watered gardens, and along streams, but also found in dry river beds and canyons, below 850 m.
Life cycle: Usually one generation per year. Occasionally there are second generation adults, but in fewer numbers and more narrowly distributed than the first generation. In Santa Clara County, California, no males are heard singing from mid–June to the end of July. No egg diapause.
Season: Spring and summer.
Remarks: Adult G. veletisoides females, and rarely males, congregate under rocks and boards.

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: This species was given this name because G. veletisoides' song and morphology are very similar to G. veletis.
More information:
subfamily Gryllinae, genus Gryllus
References: Weissman and Gray 2019
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