What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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Gryllidae

Overview

This is the largest family of crickets. Some species are apterous and subterranean but by far the largest number are winged in both sexes.

Description

The stridulatory apparatus of the male tegmen usually includes four areas: the mirror, cordal area, harp and basal areas. Three posterior branches of CuA delimit the mirror and form the boundary between the cordal area and harp, while the proximal boundary of the last is formed by CuP.

Distribution

The Gryllinae include 6 tribes based on tegminal structure, vein patterns and tibial spination formulas. Gymnogryllini include a single genus of very large, forest-dwelling crickets from northern Australia.

Cephalogryllini include 3 genera, of which Apterogryllus is wingless and subterranean.

Gryllini include the widespread Teleogryllus and the introduced house cricket Acheta domesticus .

Landrevini include only 2 Australian genera, both from the rainforests of North Queensland. Mjobergella has a large, square head; Copholandrevus is peculiar in that the short male tegmina do not bear a stridulatory file.

Gryllomorphini are a large tribe with 10 genera world-wide but only 2 in Australia. Both occur in the dry interior. Eurygryllodes includes 16 ground-dwelling species in which the males are winged and which occur in the arid deserts. In Malua both sexes are wingless.

There are 13 Australian genera of Modicogryllini, including some of our most common crickets. Loxoblemmus has a flattened, leaf-like face. Lepidogryllus contains 2 common, widespread, sympatric species which can only be satisfactorily determined by song. Not included in the above tribes is the introduced domestic pest Gryllodes supplicans (= sigillatus ) which is common in Perth and north-western Australia as well as in the Brisbane and Sydney areas.

The Nemobiinae are very small, ground-dwelling crickets; 7 genera are known from Australia. Pteronemobius is the only genus with species capable of flight. It is distinctive in having the proximal internal spine of the hind tibia short and knob-like. Bobilla contains many species principally from the south-east corner of the continent.

The Trigonidiinae occur widely throughout Australia but are best represented in the Tropics. Eleven genera are known from Australia, some of which are world-wide in distribution. Most species have a stridulatory file.

The Pentacentrinae are represented by Pentacentrus which also occurs in South-East Asia and the Pacific; species generally resemble nemobiines, have flat heads and have no stridulatory mechanism.

Phalangopsinae (32 spp., 3 genera) are slender, long-legged crickets found on rocks, tree trunks and logs, and in cave entrances. In Endotaria both sexes are wingless, in Tathra and Endacusta only females; males are loud stridulators.

Enopterinae (105 spp.) include 3 widespread tribes: Eneopterini (10 genera, usually in drier regions), Pseudoscirtini (9 genera) and Itarini (2 genera, 2 spp.; in Queensland rainforests).

The monotonous song of Oecanthinae (tree crickets; 2 genera, 7 spp.) is a typical, nocturnal sound in the arid, grassland habitats of inland Australia.

Mogopolistinae (scale-bearing crickets; 11 genera, 80 spp.) are small and occur in arid as well as rainforest habitats on leaf surfaces, in grasses, in tangles of dead stems or in tree tops. They are highly ventriloquial and a singing male may move or change position during intervals of chirps.

  • Teleogryllus commodus , male

  • Endacusta sp

  • Gryllidae sp

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