British Insects: the Families of Orthoptera


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Stethophyma Fischer

Mecostethus auctt., nec Fieber.

Adults diurnal; 22–29 mm long (males), or 29–36 mm long (females); usually vivid greenish-yellow or olive brown, with a greenish yellow stripe on the front margin of the forewings, with red undersides to the hind femora, and the hind tibiae banded black and yellow; but females are sometimes represented by a purple form.

The antennae relatively short, with fewer than 30 segments. Forewings well developed; about equalling the abdomen (neither much longer nor much shorter). Foreleg tarsi 3 segmented; mid-leg tarsi 3 segmented; hindleg tarsi 3 segmented. The hind femora keeled. Hind tibiae banded black and yellow. The ovipositor relatively short, and consisting of separate, prong-like valves articulated at the base. The males stridulous. The sound production of the males method unusual, involving flicking a hindleg against the wing-tips. Auditory organs located in the first abdominal segment (sometimes concealed by the folded wings or the hind-legs, and the tympanal cavity sometimes partially covered by a flap).

British representation. 1 species. Stethophyma grossum (Large Marsh Grasshopper). Native. East Anglia, central southern England, and Ireland (but in Ireland, confined to the far West).

Vegetarian (feeding mainly on gasses); found outdoors in natural habitats (confined to very marshy places).

Classification. Suborder Caelifera; Superfamily Acridoidea; Acrididae.

Comments. Foveolae of the vertex obsolete, faint or represented only as small, triangular depressions. The pronotum with additional transverse sulci anterior to the main one. Restricted to very marshy places.

Illustrations. • Stethophyma grossum (Lucas). • Acrididae and Tetrigidae: Burr.

To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. British insects: the families of Orthoptera. Version: 12th February 2012.’.