Clastoptera querci

Spittlebugs are related to leafhoppers and other tiny, hopping insects which suck juices out of plants. Spittlebugs are unique in that they hide in little white frothy clouds of “spit” (hence the name) as nymphs. (It’s not actually spit. It’s actually secreted from the, um, other end of the insect.)

Adult spittlebugs do not hide in bubbles — they use their powerful hind legs to jump away from danger. They are also called froghoppers, which is a word that makes me happy. Speaking of words that make me happy, the unique, almost spherical body shape of adult spittlebugs is described as globose. Say it. Say it louder. Globoooooooose. Globose.

This particular species of spittlebug, Clastoptera querci, was just officially described as a species in September 2020! It lives in Florida, on oak trees (Quercus sp.), hence “querci“.

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