Katydid!…Did she?

Olive – a Giant Long-Legged Katydid from Malaysia – was with us for only a few days, however, she left us with a precious gift; her eggs! Now, will those eggs hatch? We’re keeping our fingers crossed over here that we’ll soon be seeing some cute little katydid babies! This insect has quickly become my favorite among our exotic insects here at the Butterfly Center since it’s arrival just a couple of years ago. 

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Bob and Me

Our first was Bob – he arrived in January of 2006. We had never ordered anything like him before, so I was excited to see what he would look like. Well, it was a probably the biggest bug I had ever seen! At first I was hesitant to try to touch him, but I held my hand out and he just climbed right up there, waving his extremely long antennae all around! I was shocked that an insect of his size (roughly 6 inches in length) would have such a friendly demeanor.

I started to handle him more and more, and eventually we included him in our Bugs on Wheels program. The kids absolutely flipped out when they saw him and were so excited to touch him! I was lucky enough to find him a mate, Momma, who produced 103 eggs! Raising these impressive insects was a very interesting experience.  Out of 103 eggs, 99 hatched, which was amazing! The nymphs (immature individuals) were very fragile and faced many challenges with molting (shedding of the exoskeleton). Out of 99 babies, 13 katydids made it to adulthood. Considering the factors affecting their growth, I felt pretty awesome about that. They were featured in the Frogs: A Chorus of Colors exhibit and 3 of them are still with me! They are officially retired old fogeys, but still alive. They are going on 2 years, which is remarkable for an insect!

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Katydid Eggs

Since all we had was a few retirees sitting around, we needed some young ones for Bugs On Wheels and display in the Insect Zoo. That’s when we got Olive. She arrived along with 3 males: Milo, Otis, and Steve, but died 3 days after her arrival. So, it was a wonderful surprise when I discovered 33 eggs a couple of weeks ago! I am taking care of them and hoping that they will hatch soon, keep your fingers crossed. We want to always have this amazing animal around to share with people!

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Katydid!

Now if, you’re wondering…What is a katydid? Katydids, also known as long-horned grasshopper or bush crickets,  belong to the order Orthoptera which also includes grasshoppers and crickets. These insects are all characterized by long muscular hind legs, 2 pairs of wings, and the ability to produce noise. 

Katydids look much like a grasshopper, but are more closely related to crickets because of the way they make all that noise. Katydids and crickets rub one wing against the other while grasshoppers rub one leg against one wing. All katydid are mimics, most have leathery green forewings to help them resemble green leaves, but some mimic dangerous arthropods such as spiders or ants.

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Notice the long antennae

Katydids are sometime called Long-horned grasshoppers because of their long antennae, which can be twice the length of their body. These long antennae help the katydid at night by acting as touch receptors, allowing them to feel, as well as smell, the environment around them.

They are nocturnal animals, remaining motionless during the day to avoid their predators. They’re very often attracted to lights at night, so you may have seen one on your front porch.

These insects have what is called simple metamorphosis which is different from that of a butterfly. The baby insect hatches and looks just like the adult, only tiny. This baby is called a nymph, instead of a larva. After several molts, the insect reaches it’s full size and if wings are present, they will be fully developed. The female lays eggs, one at a time, in several different substrates, including soil, plants stems, or tree bark. They are usually cleverly disguised as seeds to throw off potential predators. 

Katydid on a rose

Creative Commons License photo credit: wolfpix
 A common Texas Katydid

There are over 6,000 described species of katydid that live all over the world, with half of them live in the Amazon rainforest. Katydids are very common in Texas and are usually a couple of inches long. Our Malaysian Katydids are arguably the largest Orthopteran species in the world!

It is such an amazing insect, you should come and see Otis sometime on display in the Entomology Hall. Milo is the one we have now for Bugs on Wheels. He, like the others, is so wonderfully calm as hundreds of children pet him several times a week. This is truly a spectacular creature!

So, if you find some time, say a little prayer for Olive’s eggs!

160 thoughts on “Katydid!…Did she?

  1. also about an hour ago i checked on the female katydid, and it looks paralyzed 0.o
    Its not moving, but it is definitely still alive, and its poo is all liquidy…has this happened to you before?

  2. Hi Erin!
    First off I’d like to compliment you on this site, it’s very nice and the information has been excellent!

    But down to business, I’ve received a grant for researching the life history of a katydid that has been ovipositing into the galls of Eurosta Solidaginis. I currently possess a 300 count mixture of 1st 2nd and 3rd instar nymphs, and was wondering if I could discuss a few points on my cage design with you! If you’re interested, you can contact me via email, and I can email you my experimental design and whatnot.

    Thanks,
    Wil

  3. Hi Erin,

    Just wanted to update you on our katydid adventure. Although our mama katydid finally died, we had over 80+ babies hatch from her eggs. Most have survived and we gave some away, a few perished and we are now releasing some of the adults as they get their adult wings. Although some are a little jumpy, most handle very well and have made wonderful “pets”. We have recently added a green anole to the household, which means we are also housing crickets to feed it. We are curious though, a female katydid that we don’t believe had any contact with a male has been laying eggs. Is that possible? We thought perhaps they would not be viable but are keeping an eye on the eggs anyway.

    Mahalo,
    Lily

  4. Hi Lily! Great to hear from you! That’s so great about your katydids! The smaller species are a lot easier to raise! What a great activity for you and Katy! So, the female that is laying eggs, is that one that you have raised, that you have kept away from other males? If she had absolutely no contact with a male, she can certainly still lay eggs. Female insects will often lay eggs wether they’re fertilized or not. So, if they eggs are not fertilized, they just won’t hatch. Have fun!!

  5. my cat has an obssesion with katydids and i usually just catch and then release them back out side however my evil little kitty caught one today and it’s back leg is missing and it’s wing is borken. i was wondering if the wing will repair itself -lisa

  6. Hi Lisa! Yes, cats do love to torture small animals, especially bugs! Your katydid friend, unfortunately will not be able to repair any of the damages and your kitty has just made it an easy target for another predator. It can, however live with the handicap. If you wanted to keep it, you could easily take care of it. If you let it go, it will eventually be gobbled up by something, but that’s just a part of nature. Thanks for reading!

  7. Hi Erin,
    I found a katydid in my house today and read online how to properly keep it as a pet. I was just wondering if she likes to be kept in the light or dark at night. Also she was missing one of her back legs when I found her but can still move around fine, does this mean I should let her go?
    PA, John

  8. Hi John!

    Katydids are nocturnal insects, so definitely give her time in the dark at night. Katydids can easily drop legs and move around quite well without one or two of them. However, you might want to keep him or her because the missing leg would slow it down, making it an easier target for a predator. Thanks for reading!

  9. Hi Erin,

    My son caught a Katydid a couple of nights ago. I have never seen one here in the Mojave Desert of California, so I was pretty surprised. I have had Stick Bugs, Hissing Cockroaches and Millipedes in the past (always been kind of fond of bugs, ha). I decided to keep the katydid and it laid eggs last night. It’s great to find a site with so much info about them. Are you in Texas? What do your “native” katydids look like?

  10. What do katydids eat?How do i make its habitate can it live with crickets what do they eat and what can i use for its ground material do i use soil gravel grass anything!Just tell me what my cage can look like i have a butterfly havitat and a 1 galllon and a real tall box that is about 20 inches telll and 5 inches wide.PLS TELL ME!!

  11. Hi Erin,

    Just wanted to thank you again for all your help. We eventually gave away or released about 80 katydids that hatched and we kept the last 10. Sadly, no one is willing to care for them so we will be releasing them before we leave on a trip. We do have some new eggs so we’ll see what happens when we return! These were laid by the katydids that were still eggs back in March. Is that a fast life cycle? We have really enjoyed our katydids and found them very easy to care for. Thanks again for everything!
    PS. Yes, Katy still wants to be an entomologist. She wants to know if I’ll give her some funds to start a museum here. Hah!

  12. Hi Lily!

    It’s been my pleasure to help you guys out!I’m glad you and Katy have been so successful at taking care of and raising these cool insects! Katydids do have a fast life cycle, well, compared to us especially. Once a katydid hatches, it can take only 4 months or maybe even less for them to be mature and ready to lay eggs. That’s the way it has to be for them to be reproductively successful in the micro-world of insects. I’m thrilled that Katy is interested in becoming an Entomologist, we definitely need more! Who knows, maybe some day she can receive a grant to build an insect museum there. Anything is possible!

  13. i found a katydid laying on the ground. its breathing but thats about it is there any way to save it? =[

  14. Hi Lisa! unfortunately, you may have found out already that there really is nothing you can do for an insect once it’s on its way out. It probably was attacked by an animal, or was just too old. Too bad!

  15. Hi Erin,
    I have been reading your posts and blogs with interest as I am attempting to breed some Katydids too. I am in the UK, I bought 6 small nymphs from a breeder at an insect fair, they are a Malaysian species called Ancylecha fenestrata. I have 5 adults from this batch which as they grew turned out to be all females, so I emailed the breeder and bought two males from him, he also sent an extra pair foc to make up for my bad luck.
    I now have 9 beautiful adults and they are laying loads of eggs which they tuck inside the layers of a leaf, which I find amazing!!!
    Do you have any tips on hatching the eggs and also would you like to swop some?
    I can email you some pictures of mine and also of one egg laying.
    Regards David

  16. What color are katydid’s eggs? I cannot tell if my katydid is laying eggs or just pooping

  17. Please help!!! My katydid has just bitten off her 4 front legs. She is still alive but I have no idea why she did this or what to do

  18. Well, I’m sorry Matthew, I have no idea why she would have done that either. But, without her 4 front legs, she’s not likely to be able to get around very well. She may need to be euthanized in the freezer. It’s hard to know what’s going on with insects sometimes. Also, katydid eggs are typically beige and look like seeds. it is very easy to distinguish them from droppings.

  19. Annabelle,

    Katydids really don’t eat much anyway and usually do so at night. So it’s perfectly normal for your katydid to be spending most of it’s time at the top of it’s cage.

  20. David,

    My biggest piece of advice for hatching your katydids is to keep the eggs warm and very humid! Since they are from Malaysia especially, they should be kept in at least 80% humidity. They should take anywhere from 2-4 months to hatch. I wish it was easy to swap, but in the US we need all kinds of special permits and it’s a very complicated process. I also don’t really have anything to offer right now. If you have any other questions, you can send an e-mail to blogadmin@hmns.org and I should be able to answer you more promptly. Thanks for reading!

  21. Hi Erin,

    I’m an orthoptera enthusiast from France and I’m pretty much in love with katydids :) I’ve been looking for live Macrolyristes corporalis specimens for ages ! From whom did you get yours and how much were they ? It was nice to read your story, this species should be more widespread in the hobby, they’re a real show stopper !

  22. Wow. What an unbelievable set. The final image made me gasp out loud. It’s just beautiful.

  23. YEAH! What a great Christmas gift. Our Katydids started hatching today. So far we have 2 beautiful babies out of 38 eggs. We hope the others hatch too. Our 3 year old son is so excited. I was wondering should we play with them? I am scared because they are so fragile. But he keeps asking to hold it. Thank you so much and I am a proud mommy again and again. Happy Holidays to all Katydid lovers. Cheers!
    Ty J

  24. Hi TY,

    I know this is a little late, but I would not suggest “playing” with the baby katydids because they are very fragile, very jumpy, and they can get stressed out easily which can kill them. However, you may find that they are calm and will stay on your hand. If this is the case I’d say it would be fine to handle them, just sparingly!

  25. You are all crazy. We live outside San Antonio on three acres. The katydids are everywhere. I probably have have had a hundred or more clinging to the exterior of our home constantly for the past two weeks. They are eating all of the leaves of my numerous live oak trees. Their dead messy carcasses are on our sidewalks and porches. Their poop is all over the sidewalks and in/around our pool. It is impossible to keep the pool clean from all of their poop. Their ‘mating’ sound is loud and constant throughout the night. Come and get all of the katydids you want. I am sure I have thousands of them. At $25-30 each I will be a millionaire soon.

  26. Hi Erin!
    I found your sight in trying to determine the purpose of the Katydid’s. We have lived in TX about 6 yrs and came across these the last couple summers. Had to take one to church to find out what it was. I don’t want to be unkind, but we have had it with these bugs. They are all over out patios and hanging onto the house and everything around it. They are green or brown and seem to slowely die, and leave a big mess of yuck behind (as well as their own bodies). I am pulling my hair out. I have been exploring, trying to understand their purpose, and why we are unindated with them. I would pack them all up and take them to a beautiful field if I thought they would never come back. We live on 5 acres, don’t know if that is why we have so many. Can you fill me in on why they are here on my patios and why they lay around dying everywhere?

    Thank you so much!
    Cindy

  27. John and Cindy,

    I’m sorry to hear about the negative experiences that you have been having with the katydids! This is definitely not the norm when it comes to these insects. They are solitary so therefore usually go on noticed and cause no damage to plants or property. They are, however, related to grasshoppers and crickets and in certain areas, certain environmental conditions can cause these insects to swarm. This is much more common in grasshoppers than in katydids and crickets. I’m sure you’re familiar with the term locust which refers to grasshoppers that swarm and migrate recking havoc to anything in their paths! Scientists are familiar with conditions of weather and food supply that cause grasshoppers top do this, but it’s not quite as clear why it happens in katydids. More than likely since both of you live on large plots of land, you have more vegetation around so naturally you have more bugs and you must have high concentrations of food they like (such as oak). Maybe you just have a popular spot where lots of eggs were laid and the offspring don’t feel the need to disperse. They grow and stick around searching for a mate, then lay eggs in the same area, so the same thing happens season after seaon. I’m sorry I cannot give you a definite answer for why this is happening. I’m afraid it’s just a part of living in the country. if it wasn’t this type of bug bothering you, it would most likely be another! Good luck!

  28. This cracks me up…I came upon this website for the same reason as the last 2 posters. I live in New Braunfels, TX on 3 heavily vegitated acres and these insects are EVERYWHERE!!!! Their dead body parts are all over my porch and they are all over my house and the rafters in the porch overhang. I’m sorry but they creep me out and I’m terrified to go outside because I don’t care for bugs, especially ones that big that keep jumping out at me
    when I walk past. I’ve heard that they change colors as they age…some are green, some brown, some reddish. Is this true? And the one thing nobody mentioned is that they bite! Hard!!! EEK! I was hoping to find an answer as to how long they’d hang around before they start to die off. There are too many for my comfort level. They hang out above my door and I am afraid to walk out for fear of them landing on me!! Yuck! And the noise at night is deafening! Even from inside my house!!

  29. Hi Sarah,

    Well, I’ll say it again, if you don’t like bugs, perhaps the country is not the best place to live!Insects are the most abundant life form on the planet and the outdoors are kind of their territory! The color and appearrance of katydids can change slightly as they grow, depending on the species. The species you have sounds like the truncated true katydid which does have a red form, which is usually the form seen during outbreaks. There have been outbreaks of this species in the past in the Texas Hill Country and judging from the last 3 comments, it must be happening again! There are several factors that may be causing this. perhaps the drought last year followed by more rains this year? They love to eat oaks so if your property is covered in them, as most are, that’s why they are there. I’m sorry I can’t tell you how long it will last. Their entire life span is probably only about 6 months. This will probably go throughout the summer, but may taper off as we get into the warmer months of summer. You’re right, they are capable of biting, they have strong jaws for chewing up leaves, but they are not aggressive and will only bite in self defense. Again, I’m sorry for the inconvenience you’re experienceing, but Insects have been around for millions of years and well, they’re going to do what they’re going to do! You will just have to ride it out!

  30. Thank you for your response Erin. And thank you for the information you have shared. You are absolutely right, the country is not my forte. I am only renting, luckily and will be moving in 2 months to the city. I’m dad to say, insects are part of the reason I am leaving this otherwise pleasant property. In the year I have lived here we have been plagued by ants, moths, mosquito hawks, spiders, scorpions, some sort of fuzzy caterpillars, millipedes and now katydids. I am done, lol. I wish I wasn’t afraid of insects, but sadly, I am. That being said, your website is very neat and informative and you have many happy followers. Best regards : )

  31. Oh It’s my pleasure Sarah! I only wish everyone appreciated insects as much as I do, but as they say “different strokes…”. I’m sorry to hear that they are driving you away from your home! You definitely won’t be safe from bugs in the city as long as your in Texas, but there will be less! Thank you for taking the time to stop by the site and I appreciate your kind words! Good luck!

  32. I know this is not the purpose of your website but since the subject came up…..does anyone know how to get rid of the brown, tobacco spit-looking droppings that are all over my porch for this katydid invasion? Thanks so much.

  33. Hi Erin, Greetings from Diamond Jubilee Land :)

    Your blog and responses has been an enormous help as I plan to house my first batch of Katydid nymphs. Collecting 10 this Friday :) Not Malaysian ones sadly, but still the very beautiful Florida ones – stilpnochlora couloniana

    My previous experience with bugs has been limited to Crickets/Locusts of different shapes and sizes as livefood for my Chameleon, Geckos, other small reptiles and amphibians. But after weekly visits for years to my nearest reptile/invert seller, I have become very attracted to insects, and once I saw the Katydid nymphs it was almost love at first sight LOL

    All of my reptiles/amphibs are housed in 100% naturally planted enclosures/vivariums. I intend to do exactly the same for the Katydids!

    I have just bought a 30″ x 16″ x 16″ ZooMed ReptiBreeze, and tomorrow will put in some substrate and branches. I also have an easy supply of fresh Bramble, Buddleia, Raspberry, and Hawthorn and will use the green stuff florists use to keep flowers fresh, as a way of keeping their bramble etc moist.

    Just want to check a couple of things:
    1) how much natural sunlight would they thrive in per day? As we often get grey skies in London, should I think about additional electric lamps?
    2) This is an all-mesh enclosure so how do you ensure good humidity? Is a layer of bottom substrate and twice a day misting sufficient?
    3) The median temperature in the room I intend to keep them in is around 70/80 Fahrenheit each day dropping to around 50 minimum at night. Do you think I ought to get a heat mat too?
    4) I am aware that insects do not always have super long lives, but I do want to give them the best possible environment in captivity. Hopefully, I will have a mix of females and males and eggs will follow as a mini colony that keeps on populating would be the ideal solution

    I have definitely found your blog the most informative online but any final reassurance/guidance before they arrive on Friday would be awesome.

    Thanks a million in advance

  34. Hi Nigel! I will do my best to answer your questions!

    -A lamp would not be a bad idea. The insects I care for live indoors in a room with no windows. Sunlight is not a necessity for all insects to survive, especially nocturnal ones such as katydids. I have had them thrive off of nothing but artificial flourescent lighting. I do use lamps though because I find they enjoy the extra heat from them and if they seem to enjuoy something, I try to use it. A happy bug is a healthy bug!

    -The species you are getting does require a bit of humidity, but not as much as tropical species. I would say misting the substrate and the enclosure a couple of times a week would definitely be sufficient.

    – 70-80 degrees during the day is perfect. If the temp gets down to 50 at night, they should still be ok. Insects can survive in any temps above freezing. Cooler temps actually will slow them down and MAY cause them to live a bit longer? I would try to keep it closer to 60 though, just to be safe since night time is when they tend to be the most active.

    If you get males and females, they will most likely mate and lay eggs. Keeping their habitat as natural as possible will definitely help to ensure this. It’s not a bad idea to have lots of sticks of varying thicknesses and textures, sticks with live foliage that are refreshed as needed (inspect for eggs before you throw the old ones out), and a lamp on for 12 hours followed by 12 hours of complete darkness will all be beneficial! I hope you find this advice helpful, but it sounds like you know what you’re doing! Sorry if i didn’t respond as quickly as you’d hoped! Thank you and good luck!!

  35. Thanks for the great reply Erin. It is now Day 3 of Katydids, and there are 2 key problems I feel I am having and wonder if you have any tips:

    1. I am really struggling to keep humidity over 35% which is way to low. I am guessing natural humidity in their habitat is definitely much higher than that even though they are not tropical as such. I think a key problem is that England is not a very humid country and my enlcosure is mesh. I am considering moving them to a plastic enclosure with drilled holes for ventilation/air flow. I am having to mist almost every couple of hours but this too is not keeping anywhere decent levels of humidity.

    2. I was using the green oasis foam that florists use to keep the buddleia and bramble in (and again hoping this water soaked block would aid humidity) – but the branches are wilting badly after less than 24 hours…

    3. I have a small tray of damp forest substrate mixed with desert sand just to have another source of moisture but that too is not helping humidity.

    Otherwise they are eating away and they sure know how to go to the toilet, so I am busy keeping the floor of the enclosure clean!!

    Thanks again and look forward to your reply

  36. Hi again Erin, One other question – if I continue to house them in the Mesh Enclosure, I am definitely going to invest in some lighting – probably a spot type bulb in a dome canopy fitting. What wattage is adequate for Katydids – I want them to be warm, but obviously not fry! I am also thinking maybe the extra heat will encourage moisture evaporation and ultimatley also help with humidity. Thank you again, Nigel

  37. Hi Nigel! Well, don’t worry too much about your katydids! They are very hardy and the lack of humidity isn’t quite as big of a deal as you think. It is true, their natural habitat is a bit more humid. They are mostly found in Florida. I keep native katydids here at around 30-40% humidity and the ambient humidity in Houston is of course, usually much higher than that! If you’re worried about that, than I would suggest covering the outside of the walls in of your enclosure with plastic wrap. I like to use glad press and seal, do ya’ll have that there? Otherwise, saran or cling wrap would work too. I would just put the bramble and other foliage in jars or vases of water to keep them alive, it will work much better than the foam you are using.

    As far as lighting, again, there is no need to overthink it. I just use a 50 or 75 watt bulb. They don’t need it to survive or thrive, but just enjoy the extra heat, so you should not need anymore than that! Good luck!

  38. That’s really reassuring Erin, and yes they do seem to be thriving already in their enclosure. I have added a lot of bramble and buddleia, and using your earlier tip of fresh romaine lettuce. I am going to sort out the lighting just so they have some heat. Thanks again – I keep scanning through your blog as it is by far the best source of Katydid info online!

    I am now trying to find some of the Malaysian Katydids and it is great to hear they can happiyl cohabit providing the enclosure is tall and spacious enough!

    PS Glad press & seal we ain’t got lol

  39. Well, that is really a great compliment Nigel, thank you! I’m so glad that you have found my blog so helpful! I really need to put up some new posts. It’s been nearly a year since my last one, but I have been SO busy!

    Sorry for the Texas lingo, lol! And it should be “we aint got no glad press and seal”!

  40. Sorry to bombarb you with more questions (honestly, I did scroll through this entire blog to see if the question had been asked & answered previously!!). In my mesh enclosure 16″ wide 16″ deep 30″ tall, currently on your advice, naturally planted to resemble their natural habitat as much as possible, what is the total number of adults that could be expected to share such a space. the last thing I want to do is have overcrowding. By the way, I installed a dome canopy with lighting and they definitely are enjoying the extra heat a lot more – they are almost all congregated on leaves near the top :) Thank you again

  41. Katydids are one of my favorite insects(the praying mantis may be my favorite though)Katydids are very fascinating indeed. :)

  42. i was wondering why katydids die after laying their eggs? why don’t they just live a little bit longer?
    because i had two females, and they both laid eggs, after 3 days, they both died. :S
    can you give me any answers for this?

  43. I’ve had this male common garden katydid as a pet for a few months now since I found him in my garden as a nymph. Last night I cleaned out his living area and gave him a celery leaf and a piece of strawberry. Ever since late last night he hasn’t moved, only moving very little if I lightly nudge him. I’m not sure whats wrong with him…

  44. Hi Erin!

    I happened to stumble across your blog post after doing some research on Katydid eggs.

    Why was I doing research on Katydid eggs, you might wonder? Well, it’s pretty simple…

    Back in October (2012), we had a visitor at dinner time: a Katydid! It came by and hung out on our balcony sliding door for a while. (I had no idea we even had these little guys here in Southern California!)

    Early in November (2012), I found a string of odd looking “seeds” on the wire of one of my wind chimes. I’d been meaning to look up what they were, but never got around to it, until now. And after looking it up, they ended up being Katydid eggs!

    So, our little visitor back in October left us with 24-25 eggs!

    I want to see them hatch! I know not all will make it, but it would be a neat “cycle of life” to witness, especially for my young boys! I almost feel as though she’s (the Katydid) entrusted us with her children. But I have no idea how to go about making sure the eggs are ok. Obviously, in the wild, without any human eyes, they’d just fend for themselves. But as they’re RIGHT outside my balcony window, I feel almost responsible for them, haha!

    Any tips on what I can do for them? Should do? Shouldn’t do? Etc…?

    Thanks! ^_^

  45. Hi Anne Marie! I’m so glad that you want to share this experience with your boys. It is very fun and interesting to watch insects grow and it teaches children about nature and how different animals grow and develop! If the eggs were to hatch where they are, it would more than likely happen without you knowing it and the little nymphs would scatter away quickly. If you want to keep some of them, I would try to very carefully and gently remove some of the eggs from the wire and place them in a small aquarium with a well fitting lid. Tiny katydid nymphs can escapre through small openings! You can just kind of sprinkle the eggs down in the dirt at the bottom of the aquarium, but you shouldn’t bury them. Be sure to put several sticks in the aquarium for them to cling to and some foliage would also help. You can also add romaine lettuce and other fruits and vegetables for them to try. You want to keep the habitat moist, but not wet. Humidity is important to insects and it tends to be drier indoors. They should also be in a warm part of your home. I hope these eggs hatch for you and you guys can observe the lifecycle! Let me know if you have any more questions!

  46. Thanks for the info, Erin! I’m definitely gonna try this out! I’ll let you know how it goes! ^_^

  47. Hi Erin…Gosh, i wish i had come across your blog much sooner. 2.5 months ago, a Katydid appeared on our garage wall. Being one of her hind legs and a middle leg was missing, i decided to care for her.

    Life was going great for Katydid..She began to strengthen to the point where she’d chirp a couple of times each night.
    Recently, her belly has gotten larger and she doesnt move as much. I’ve been hand-feeding her lettuce, hibiscus flowers, mashed bananas, and would leave water-soaked cotton balls on the leaves of her plants.

    Tonight, she barely moved, hardly ate/drank…and for some odd reason, she attacked her middle leg to the point where she can no longer use this leg, which means she is down to her 2 front legs, and one hind leg.
    She seems weak ,but its clear shes trying her best to stay alive..

    I’m wondering if it’s possible for her to remain alive in this condition. She already had a difficult time getting around with 4 legs, now she only has 3. I can’t seem to understand why she would attack her own leg :(

    I would appreciate any information/advice you could share with me..I’ve grown so fond of this Katydid…i want to do what’s best for her..
    Could you please help the both of us?

    Thank you so much…Jan Ishimine

  48. Hi Jan! Well, you may find it comforting to know that number of legs does not usually affect the ability of an insect in captivity to survive, as long it doesn’t restrict movement so much that it keeps them from being able to get food. I’m not sure excatly why she would attack her leg. Sometimes insects have unusual behavior that we don’t understand simply because we cannot get into their brains! The only logical explanation would be if she injured her leg and neededto remove it because it was too much of a burden. This is often the case with insects. I would just keep caring for her like you have been, sounds like you’re doing a great job! The decrease in her acticity may also just be because she is aging and nearing the end of her lifespan. If you live in the U.S. the katydid you have found has a predetermined lifespan of less than a year, usually about 6-8 months. So, if she was already an adult when you found her, she could have been a good way through her lifespan. If she does pass away, you can rest assured that it was not because of anything you did. Insects only grace us with their presence for a short time!

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