Variation

The smallest crickets are tiny, wingless forms comprising the subfamily Myrmecophilinae (ca. 1 mm); they apparently live and reproduce only in ant nests. The largest are the short-tailed crickets (Brachytrupinae) called bull crickets (ca. 5 cm); they excavate burrows a meter or more deep. Different cricket groups vary from having slender, fragile, whitish or greenish bodies with virtually transparent forewings (tree

FIGURE 1 Adult male Gryllus pennsylvanicus. (Photograph courtesy of David H. Funk.)
FIGURE 2 Adult male Oecanthus latipennis, with the forewings in singing position. (Photograph courtesy of David H. Funk.)

crickets: Oecanthinae, Fig. 1) to heavy-bodied, aggressive brown and black defenders of burrows and territories (field crickets: Gryllinae, Fig. 2, short-tailed crickets: Bachytrupinae; mole crickets: Gryllotalpinae). James Thurber said of one grylline, the sturdily built European burrowing field cricket (Gryllus campestris), that it "has the aspect of a wrecked Buick."

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