pine tree cricket
Oecanthus pini Beutenmuller 1894

male and female
male on tamarack
mating pair

18 s of calling song; male from Columbia Co., Ga.; 24.0C. (WTL587-14)

 Click on sound bar to hear graphed song.
Sound spectrogram of 2 s of calling at 24.0°C (from WTL587-14). Dominant frequency 3.4 kHz.

Identification:  Length 16–18 mm. Head, pronotum, and legs (except for hind femora) brown; forewings light green (but the green fades in pinned specimens); length of forewings >12 mm.

Habitat:  Foliage of various species of pine, including pitch, scrub, shortleaf, loblolly, and white; also balsam fir.

Season:  First adults mid June in the south, early August in the north. In northern localities calling lasts until frost, but it may end earlier in the south. One generation annually.

Song at 25°C:  A continuous trill at 45 p/s; carrier frequency 3.5 kHz.

Song data:  See Walker 1963.

Similar species:  Tamarack tree cricket—on tamarack or hemlock; colors darker; length of forewings <12 mm.

Remarks:  The pine tree cricket usually is well out of reach in the crowns of pine trees. It is also remarkably difficult to see when it nestles head inward among the needles of its host. The brown anterior blends with the bundle sheaves and the green forewings with the needles.

More information:  genus Oecanthus, subfamily Oecanthinae.

References and Links: Fulton 1915; Walker 1963. Collins 2010-date.

Nomenclature:  OSF (Orthoptera Species File Online).