Differential Grasshopper
Melanoplus differentialis (Thomas) and others

Description and Damage: Grasshoppers range in color from yellow to light grey-brown with dark markings. Sizes range from less than 1 inch to almost 2 inches. All grasshoppers have large hind legs for jumping. Usually only older nymphs and adults are found in grain sorghum fields. All plant stages may be attacked. Grasshopper feeding on maturing grain heads reduces yield. Infestations generally are concentrated on field margins.

Of the approximately 600 species that occur in the United States, only a few are of economic importance. Most species of grasshoppers pass the winter in the egg stage. The eggs are laid during summer and fall in packet-like masses below the surface of the soil of pasture land, field margins and roadsides. The eggs hatch into small nymphs in April, May and June. The exact time and percentage of eggs hatching depend on weather conditions and locality.