Chionomus quadrispinosus

This handsome black, brown and white planthopper with clear wings is Chionomus quadrispinosus, no common name. The “thumblike” antennae (such a little alien, isn’t it?) and the spur on the hind leg mark it as a member of the family Delphacidae, the largest family of planthoppers. Someone has carefully photographed each of the 14 members…

Pelitropis rotulata

This mottled green planthopper, with its distinctive flattened head and oval crossvein pattern on the wing tips, is Pelitropis rotulata, no common name. It is native to the southeastern US (eastern Texas through Florida through Virginia) and Cuba. Nymphs have diagnostic red “tail lights”. It’s a member of the family Tropiduchidae, and…otherwise suffers from Wikipedia…

Melanoliarus sp. Planthopper

It’s hard to tell scale in macro photography, but this planthopper was relatively huge — almost 1 cm — and was very patient while I got some gorgeous photos. Melanoliarus has about 48 species in North America, and they can only be firmly identified by looking at the genitals of the males, so Melanoliarus sp….

Waterhyacinth Planthopper Nymph

Megamelus scutellaris, a native of South America, was released in Florida in 2010 as a biological control agent for waterhyacinth, Eichhornia crassipes, an invasive aquatic plant. Waterhyacinth forms amalgamations on the water’s surface and blocks sunlight from reaching other plants below it, and depleting available oxygen in the water. Adult waterhyacinth planthoppers come in two…

Citrus Flatid Planthopper

The citrus flatid planthopper (Metcalfa pruinosa) makes me happy. It is a member of the family Flatidae, whose name amuses me greatly (and, yes, references the fact that these insects are “flat” when viewed from above). Also known as the frosted moth-bug, Pruinosa is common in eastern North America, ranging from Canada to Mexico. Adults…