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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pyrgomorphidae (Foam or Lubber Grasshoppers)

Pyrgomorphidae (Foam or Lubber Grasshoppers) are distinguished by their bright colors. They can produce a foamy defensive secretion which is toxic to predators.
The grasshopper's nervous system is controlled by ganglia, loose groups of nerve cells which are found in most species more advanced than cnidarians. In grasshoppers, there are ganglia in each segment as well as a larger set in the head, which are considered the brain.
There is also a neuropile in the centre, through which all ganglia channel signals. The sense organs (sensory neurons) are found near the exterior of the body and consist of tiny hairs, which consist of one sense cell and one nerve fibre, which are each specially calibrated to respond to a certain stimulus.
While the sensilla are found all over the body, they are most dense on the antennae, palps (part of the mouth), and cerci (near the posterior). Grasshoppers also have tympanal organs for sound reception. Both these and the sensilla are linked to the brain via the neuropile.

32 comments:

JM said...

This guy is absolutely fantastic and your detail shots are amazing! Great information too, Joan.

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Interesting post and great photos. What a beautiful grasshopper this is. Diane

birdy said...

Excellent close-ups Joan! Thanks for introducing this wonderful species, with some great information.

Sandra said...

I never thought i would say I saw a handsome grasshopper, but this one is quite handsome indeed. his details and colors are wonderful. i do have to say, he would NOT be sitting on MY hand.

Craig Glenn said...

Very nice Joan! Are they very destructive?

Craig

Rusty said...

Beautiful detail! And a very colorful grasshopper. ATB!

Andrea said...

So beautiful...
It's the first time I heard about a toxic secretion from grasshoppers.
From the the name I think this secretion is something like a foam,
or am I wrong?

Krista said...

WOW! This is fascinating, scary, creepy, ugly AND beautiful all at once. Oh, I forgot informative! Great post Joan, you gave me the heebie jeebies! LOL!

Gaelyn said...

Very well adapted creatures. Love their bright colors and patterns.

Becky and Gary said...

That is ONE cool grasshopper! Love it's colors.
Can't wait to see the elephant mud bath!
B.

JRandSue said...

Amazing detail,superb Macro work.
Fantastic as always.
John.

Dylan said...

Nice colors!

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Jose. I found the most amazing mantis yesterday. I have not downloaded the pictures yet but I hope they came out well.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Diane. We have so many really beautiful ones here.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Birdy. You are welcome.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! He IS a handsome fellow Sandra. I think that soon you will be taking pictures of isects on your hand too. I am a bad influence. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

These do not swarm Craig but each individual does make a fast meal out of a plant. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Rusty. I had a co-operative subject. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

There are many grashoppers here which put out this toxic foam around the neck Andrea so you are quite right. Most get it from eating Milkweed and all belong to Pyrgomorphidae. They are all large in size too and are some of our most colourful ones.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! What a combination Krista. :) If you saw the huge spider which was on my wall last night you would have run a mile. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Gaelyn. I found this one when visiting Anne.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Becky. I love watching them. I will post the picture as soon as I have downloaded them. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks John. Having such a lovely subject helps. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks for visiting and commenting Dylan.

Firefly said...

Stunning close-ups, but that's one ugly bugger I would'nt allow to sit on my hand.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! How can you say that Jonker? He is handsome and oh so charming. :)

Mary said...

That is a very colorful grasshopper...wearing a "coat of many colors". That last shot is wonderful. Your macros are so clear and detailed.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Mary. Most of these large grasshoppers are very colorful and make good subjects.

Wendy said...

Joan these are AMAZING macros!! And those colours on the grasshopper are beautiful! He's quite big too, yikes :) Thanks for all the info, I like how you put information about your subjects, it's nice to learn about them :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Wendy. Some of our species are huge but we are so used to them, they do not scare us. :) It is nice to know you find it interesting as well. Theses bugs are fascinating, well not only the bugs, but all of nature. :)

Rambling Woods said...

wow...love to learn more about these guys and to see one up close....

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Michelle.