Sunday, July 20, 2008

The cricket known as a Corn Cricket.  Acanthoplus discoidalis is a species in the katydid family.  The mature cricket like the one which is drinking beer with us is the  most often seen in Namibia.  They need to eat and mate while there is food in a dry climate.

The black corn cricket is not quite as large as the  brown cricket above because it is the immature version of the species and they usually spend their time eating where they feel safe and not walking around looking for a mate.

The damage the insects did to these aloes are not as gruesome as it seems. An aloe has no problem to replace the leaves and it will go dormant and hang on till the rain comes.

4 comments:

John said...

Wow, how large is the one in the top picture? Looks like a huge cricket.

ericat said...

yes that was a huge female. Her body would be slightly shorter than the palm of your hand but she is bulky (and add the legs). They seem to differ in size - depends on how much they have to eat. They live to eat and have sex (could not resist that) - to eat and lay eggs in a short period of time, while the food last in a dry climate. They eat any plant material but they need protein to develop the eggs. Then they would eat anything defenseless, wounded or long dead. Including each other. If one gets run over on the road others will come to eat, and get run over .. etc.

bashinginnieboendoes said...

Erica, ek het daai goed die eerste keer in Namibe, in die suide van Angola, gesien. Duisende en duisende van hulle. Het die plante behoorlik toegesit. Verskriklik grillerig!

Pomona Belvedere said...

Beautiful cricket picture and as usual useful and hard-to-find advice about the growing habits of aloes.