What Do Katydids Eat? Fun Facts And How To Get Rid Of Them

Martha Martins
Oct 16, 2023 By Martha Martins
Originally Published on Nov 12, 2021
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An adult long-legged katydid

Katydids are insects in the family Tettigoniidae who are also known as bush crickets and long-horned grasshoppers.

Katydids are small, mostly green insects that look a lot like grasshoppers. They are found all over the world but mostly in tropical regions.

Katydids are insects who are omnivorous and eat both plants and other insects. Along with leaves, katydids eat small pests that cause harm to plants.

In tropical regions, they can be seen flying and jumping from plant to plant in search of nectar, pollen and fresh leaves. The body size of katydids varies between 0.2-5.1 in (5-130 mm). Body size varies in different katydids, the smaller ones being more agile and faster than the larger ones.

In this article, we shall find out in detail about what katydids eat and what kind of insects they are! So keep reading!

And if you like reading fun facts then you will also like our facts on what do robins eat and what do rhinos eat.

What is the lifecycle of katydids?

The katydid is not a single insect species but is a whole family of insects. Katydids are species in the family of bush crickets that are mainly found in a field of greenery. Species of katydids are found all over the world, except in Antarctica. Katydid species live for about a year or less.

Katydids are great in nature but not in size. They are tiny insects that can easily be found around the yard of your house.

The katydid's life cycle is known to be around a year or less. They start mating once their last molt stage completes.

Female common garden katydid species lay their eggs either in soil or on plant stems and branches. They lay eggs on plant stems in rows usually at the end of summer. Nymphs of katydids or bush crickets are either similar to their parents in nature or mimic other insects so that they can keep away from predators.

Nymphs turn into katydids gradually. However, katydids don't turn into anything as this is the last stage in their life cycle.

 

How to take care of katydid insects?

Katydids are found commonly in all continents except Antarctica. Do you know how many katydid insects live in the world? Well, there are around 6400 species of katydids present in the world. Katydids are also kept as pets.

Leaf katydids are kept as pets as they are not at all harmful to humans. Katydid species are very delicate insects so they need lots of care from their owners.

Always be sure to keep their home clean. Suppose they are kept in a box, then the box should have proper ventilation. Inside the box, there should be branches and leaves placed so that it replicates the environment you would find in your backyard.

Common garden katydids love to eat young leaves, seeds and fruits. When playing with them, make sure to be patient and handle them softly.

A lot of people are confused as to whether katydids bite? Well, they are gentle and are not at all harmful to humans and feel great to have around. Smaller katydids never bite humans but the bigger ones can sometimes land a bite if they feel any sort of danger. However, a katydid bite is almost painless.

An armored katydid.

What kind of leaves do katydids eat?

Katydids, also known as bush crickets, can be seen everywhere. They belong to the order Orthoptera, suborder Ensifera and infraorder Tettigoniidea. They are in the superfamily Tettigonioidea and the family Tettigoniidae. The insects in the family Tettigoniidae are commonly knowns as katydids. Katydids eat mostly leaves and grass. Also, the common garden katydid loves to eat grass.

Katydids are omnivorous insects who eat young leaves, seeds, fruit, nectar, pollen, insects and grass. Katydids feed on insects such as aphids and other smaller insects and their eggs.

But mostly they are known to eat fruit and leaves. There are different kinds of leaves that they munch on. Most famous are the leaves of brambles, oaks, hazels, hypericums and butterfly bushes.

Katydids also love eating flowers and flower products like pollen and nectar. Because they feed on pollen and roam from plant to plant, they help pollinate some flowers. Just like katydids feed on aphids, there are other insects and animals present who feed on katydids too.

Animals, like birds, snakes and bats, feed on katydids. And yes, they don't eat spiders; spiders eat them.

How can you get rid of katydids?

Katydids are good insects who help humans in a lot of ways. They cause no big damage to crops so there is no urgent need to get rid of them.

In fact, it is good to have them in the yard as they feed on insects that actually cause damage to plants. A lot of people make their crop field a katydid habitat so that they don't need to use pesticides.

There are lots of insects that live in plants and slowly destroy them. They are known as pests, and some of the most common examples are weevils, whiteflies, grasshoppers and aphids as well.

First, it is good to understand that grasshoppers and katydids are completely different insects. Both have the same body color and similar-looking back legs or hind legs, but at the same time, they have differences too.

Katydids have very long antennas compared to grasshoppers, which are sometimes even longer than their body! A katydid's body is flatter and a lot of species look like leaves or an odd flower.

Grasshoppers destroy crops and will decimate a field while katydids guard these crops. Katydids also eat leaves but that doesn't cause significant damage and infestations are rare.

Katydids eat small insects, like aphids, their eggs and larvae, and keep plants pest-free. So there is no need to get rid of katydids at all!

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 'What do katydids eat?' then why not take a look at 'What do kangaroos eat?' or 'Puss moth facts'.

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Written by Martha Martins

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Linguistics

Martha Martins picture

Martha MartinsBachelor of Arts specializing in Linguistics

Martha is a full-time creative writer, content strategist, and aspiring screenwriter who communicates complex thoughts and ideas effectively. She has completed her Bachelor's in Linguistics from Nasarawa State University. As an enthusiast of public relations and communication, Martha is well-prepared to substantially impact your organization as your next content writer and strategist. Her dedication to her craft and commitment to delivering high-quality work enables her to create compelling content that resonates with audiences.

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