Excessive antennae

Katydid nymph
Look at my antennae, everyone!

Katydids are closely related to grasshoppers and crickets (they are all classified as Orthoptera), and the easiest way to tell katydids, at any age, from grasshoppers is the length of their antennae.

This little one (8-10mm long) seems to have overdone it somewhat but is perfectly normal – see, for instance, a differently coloured one I photographed in April. When it grows up it will look something like this or this, but it is often impossible to know the exact identity of a juvenile insect.

Katydid nymph front view
Face to face with the same nymph, with the antennae blurred to invisibility by depth-of-field limitations of the camera.

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