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Painted Grasshopper

Poekilocerus pictus


Male and female painted grasshoppers seen during mating season. The grasshopper feeds on the poisonous plant Calotropis gigantea. Upon slight pinching of the head or abdomen, the half-grown immature form ejects liquid in a sharp and sudden jet, with a range of two inches or more, from a dorsal opening between the first and second abdominal segments. The discharge is directed towards the pinched area and may be repeated several times. The liquid is pale and milky, slightly viscous and bad-tasting, containing cardiac glycosides that the insect obtains from the plant it feeds upon. In the adult, the discharge occurs under the tegmina and collects as viscous bubbly heap along the sides of the body.


Seen at a small forest near a river.


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Wild Things
Spotted by
Wild Things

Maharashtra, India

Spotted on Aug 9, 2015
Submitted on Aug 16, 2015

Spotted for Mission

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