Page:Insects - Their Ways and Means of Living.djvu/64
apparently produced in some way by the wings themselves. One of these, common through the Northern States, is known as the cracker locust, Circotettix verruculatus, on account of the loud snapping notes it emits. Several other members of the same genus are also cracklers, the noisiest being a western species called C. carlingianus. Scudder says he has had his attention drawn to this grasshopper “by its obstreperous crackle more than a quarter of a mile away. In the arid parts of the West it has a great fondness for rocky hillsides and the hot vicinity of abrupt cliffs in the full exposure to the sun, where its clattering rattle re-echoes from the walls.”
The Katydid Family
While the grasshoppers give examples of the more primitive attempts of insects at musical production and may be compared in this respect to the more primitive of human races, the katydids show the highest development of the art attained by insects. But, just as the accomplishments of one member of a human family may give prestige to all his relations and descendants, so the talent of one noted member of the katydid family has given notoriety to all his congeners, and his justly deserved name has come to be applied by the undiscriminating public to a whole tribe of singers of lesser or very mediocre talent whose only claim to the name of katydid is that of family relationship. In Europe the katydids are called simply the longhorn grasshoppers. In entomology the family is now the Tettigoniidae, though it had long been known as the Locustidae.
The katydids in general are most easily distinguished from the locusts, or shorthorn grasshoppers, by the great length of their antennae, those delicate, sensitive, tapering threads projecting from the forehead. But the two familles differ also in the number of joints in their feet, the grasshoppers having three (Fig. 17 A) and the katydids four (B). The grasshoppers place the entire foot on the