Orphulella pelidna



Marsh slantfaced grasshopper

Orphulella pelidna (Burmeister)

Subfamily Gomphocerinae


Mostly brown (rarely green) grasshopper with black and white markings. Normally a dark stripe extends from the eye to the forewing.

The lateral carinae of the pronotum are cut by with two or three sulci with posterior triangular marks (black).

Hind tibia are brown, but a bluish tint is sometimes seen.

Wings extend past the hind femur, and normally beyond the abdomen. Hind wings are clear.

Can be confused with Orphulella speciosa and Syrbula admirabilis. Orphulella pelidna occurs in habitats that are typically more wet than O. speciosa. It can be distinguished from S. admirabilis by its small size and unspotted forewings.

Distribution and habitat

Present throughout the United States, southern Canada, and northern Mexico. Typically occurs in moist areas of short and mixed-grass prairies.

Economic importance

Not economically important.

Food preferences

Feeds on grasses and sedges.

Dispersal and migration

Flies rapidly, but only for short distances.

Often flies into vegetation, where it will then walk to seek shelter.


Little is known about the hatching of O. pelidna.

However, O. speciosa is known to be a late developing species with hatch lasting four to six weeks starting in May and June.

Nymphal development

Nymphs are present in the spring and go through five instars.

Adults and reproduction

Adults present July through October.

Little is known about the reproduction of O. pelidna.

Population ecology

Orphulella pelidna is found in numerous habitats, but is known to avoid highly shaded areas.

However, It is rarely found in high densities in any habitat.

Little is known on the ecology of O. pelidna.

Daily activity

Not known for O. pelidna, but documented for O. speciosa.

Source and date

University of Nebraska by Sean Whipple & Mathew L. Brust June 2011

Selected references

Brust, M. L., W. W. Hoback, and R. J. Wright.


The Grasshoppers (Orthoptera: Acrididae and Romaleidae) of Nebraska.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension. 138pp.

Campbell, J. B., W. H. Arnett, J. D. Lambley, O. K.

Jantz and H. Knutson.

1974. Grasshoppers (Acrididae) of the Flint Hills native tallgrass prairie in Kansas.

Kansas Agricultural Experimental Station Research Paper 19.

Capinera, J. L., R. D. Scott, and T. J. Walker.


Field Guide to Grasshoppers, Katydids, and Crickets of the United States.

Comstock Publishing Associates. 280pp.

Otte, D. 1981. The North American Grasshoppers. Volume 1. Acrididae: Gomphocerinae and Acridinae. Harvard University Press, Cambridge. 275 pp.