2005 Student Research Conference:
18th Annual Student Research Conference


Predicting Katydid (Tettigoniidae) and Grasshopper (Acrididae) Abundance in Managed Conservation Reserve Program Grasslands: A Test or the Phylogenetic Constraints Hypothesis
Jerod D. Romine
Dr. Jonathan C. Gering, Faculty Mentor

The Phylogenetic Constraints Hypothesis (PCH) argues that ancestral (plesiomorphic) characters act as a constraint on the population dynamics of species. We carried out a test of the PCH by examining Orthopteran abundance in response to different Conservation Reserve Program management techniques. Data were collected using sweep net sampling in six fields in Scotland County, Missouri. These fields were chosen based on management technique (burn or mow) and were sampled every month for five months (April-August). Each field contained two field transects and 28 sample transects. Mean katydid abundance in mowed fields was 27.8 while mean grasshopper abundance was 14.7. Mean katydid abundance in burned fields was 8.5 while mean grasshopper abundance was 34.5. This suggests that the constraint of the katydid’s plant-piercing ovipositor allows for higher success in fields with more available plant cover, whereas the grasshopper’s soil-piercing ovipositor allows for higher success in fields with more exposed soil.

Keywords: katydid, grasshopper, acrididae, tettigoniidae, phylogenetic, plesiomorphic, constraint, population dynamics


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 11-2
Location: VH 1412
Time: 8:30

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