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The Katydid can be heard from the trees on warm summer nights throughout the
Baltimore-Washington area. The call, used by the male to attract a mate, is said to
sound like "Katy-did, Katy-didn't". It is this call that gives the Katydid its name.
Katydids are camouflaged to look like a leaf. They are usually only seen when they
are attracted to porch and street lights because they are so well camouflaged in
their natural habitat.
Katydids make their distinctive call by rubbing their forewings together. They hear
through an "ear" on their front leg. The "ear" can be seen as a slit or as an exposed
tympanum, depending on the species, on the tibia of the front leg.
Katydids eat mostly leaves although they may be omnivorous and occasionally eat
other insects. Eggs are laid in branches, where they may overwinter before hatching
There are many different species of katydids, with probably over 100 species in the
This Katydid was attracted to my front porch light on a warm summer night.