British Insects: the Families of Orthoptera


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Tetrix Latreille

Acrydium aucct., nec Geoffroy; Tettix Dalman.

Adults diurnal; 8–14 mm long (the females slightly the larger); exhibiting a wide range of brown and grey shades, sometimes reddish or greenish tinged, sometimes mottled and/or spotted.

The antennae relatively short, with fewer than 30 segments. The pronotum conspicuously extended backwards over the abdomen. Forewings much reduced in size (reduced to small lateral lobes); much shorter than the abdomen. Hindwings fully developed and functional for flight to reduced or vestigial. Foreleg tarsi 2 segmented; mid-leg tarsi 2 segmented; hindleg tarsi 3 segmented. The hind femora keeled. The ovipositor relatively short, and consisting of separate, prong-like valves articulated at the base. The males mute. Auditory organs absent.

British representation. 3 species. Tetrix ceperoi (Cepero’s Ground-hopper), T. subulata (Slender Ground-hopper), T. undulata (Common Ground-hopper). Native. Northern Scotland, southern Scotland, northern England, English Midlands, East Anglia, Wales, southeast England, central southern England, southwest England, Isle of Wight, Ireland, and Channel Islands (but only T. undulata occurs in the north of England and Scotland, and T. ceperoi is restricted to South Wales, extreme southern England and the Channel Islands).

Vegetarian (feeding on mosses and algae); found outdoors in natural habitats (in various, often wet situations).

Classification. Suborder Caelifera; Superfamily Tetrigoidea; Tetrigidae.

Comments. Tarsi with no pad between the claws; the frons below the median ocellus with a single, median keel which divides ventrally and with the fronto-clypeal suture forms a ‘supra-clypeal triangle’.

Illustrations. • Tetrix subulata (Tetrigidae, Acrididae. Ample-winged Grouse-locust: B. Ent. 439). • Tetrix subulata (detail: B. Ent. 439). • Tetrix subulata (dissections: B. Ent. 439). • Tetrix subulata:B. Ent. 439, legend+text. • Tetrix subulata:B. Ent. 439, text cont.. • Tetrix (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.’.