Hoppers of North Carolina:
Spittlebugs, Leafhoppers, Treehoppers, and Planthoppers
Scientific Name: Search Common Name:
Family (Alpha):
« »
CICADELLIDAE Members: NC Records

Graphocephala hieroglyphica - No Common Name



© Kyle Kittelberger- reddish-pink form

© Kyle Kittelberger- note head markings

© Rob Van Epps- grayish-green form

© Rob Van Epps- note head markings
Taxonomy
Family: CICADELLIDAESubfamily: CicadellinaeSynonym: Neokolla hieroglyphica hieroglyphica, Tettigonia hieroglyphica
Identification
Online Photographs: BugGuide                                                                                  
Description: A variable species, ranging in color from grayish-green or light blue to reddish-pink. The body and wings tend to be concolorous, and the wing venation is typically blackish though it can be reddish and appear as if the red color is bleeding into the wing cells. There are bold black lines on the wings, and black markings on the corners of an otherwise yellowish scutellum. The head and pronotum are concolorous with the base wing color but have black markings. The head has complex, bold, black and symmetrical markings on either side of a pale, unmarked midline; these markings are characteristic of this species. The female pregenital sternite has a truncated, convex triangular projection and is more than twice as long as the preceding sternite; it extends outwards. Male subgenital plates are long and triangular. Adults are 6.0-7.0 mm long. (Delong 1960)

The nymphs of this species are fairly similar to those of G. gothica; location can probably distinguish species for now, and it appears that the nymphs of gothica have darker-brown sides of the body.

Distribution in North Carolina
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Distribution: Fairly widespread throughout the southern, central and western United States, previously occurring as far east as the Mississippi River valley region in Arkansas (Delong 1960); the records here apparently represent a range expansion for this species.
Abundance: Uncommon to rare; only recorded from a couple counties in the Piedmont.
Seasonal Occurrence
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Has been found in grassy, field-like habitat as well as wet depressions.
Plant Associates: Willow (Salix sp.) (DeLong 1948)
Behavior:
Comment: G. hieroglyphica and G. gothica are somewhat of a taxonomic mess and can be quite confusing: while many experts treat these two species as belonging in Graphocephala, some place them in the genus Neokolla. Both species were initially described as Tettigonia gothica and T. hieroglyphica. When they were elevated to Neokolla, both were synonymized under Neokolla hieroglyphica (in particular, T. gothica was N. h. atra and T. hieroglyphica was N. h. hieroglyphica). Young (1977), who revised Cicadellini comprehensively, treated Neokolla as a junior synonym of Graphocephala, something that has been followed by other leafhopper workers. Neokolla was later resurrected in a paper based on an interpretation of Say’s original description of the type species of Neokolla (hieroglyphica Say) that was contrary to those of prior authors (plus, Say’s description could apply to either hieroglyphica or gothica, as evident by both being placed under the same species within Neokolla). Neokolla species in general are quite variable in coloration, with some of these colors getting named forms, which some have then elevated to species status. As a result of this taxonomic disagreement, Graphocephala gothica is what some are currently calling Neokolla hieroglyphica, and Graphocephala hieroglyphica appears to be what some are calling Neokolla uhleri (though uhleri, considered for some time as a variety of hieroglyphica, was depicted in older literature as having quite different head markings). For now we will go with what takes precedence, following Young, but as you can see this taxonomic reshuffling has resulted in quite a bit of confusion and complexity.

G. hieroglyphica var. dolobrata, sometimes treated as a full species (as Neokolla or Keonolla dolobrata), has not been found in NC yet. It ranges from the Mississippi River into the Southwestern United States. It is very dark, with the wings and much of the body a rather uniform bluish-black color that causes the distinctive head markings to be absent/hidden.

Status: Native

Species Photo Gallery for Graphocephala hieroglyphica No Common Name

Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Pale form.
Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Pale form.
Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Pale form.
Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Caught sweeping. Pale form.
Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Caught sweeping. Pale form.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 5.2mm
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 5.2mm
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 5.6mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 5.6mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 6.1 mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation; identified by C. Dietrich via specimen as Graphocephala sp. probably hieroglyphica (Say) [female...]; white background pics taken by K. Kittelberger
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 6.1 mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation; identified by C. Dietrich via specimen as Graphocephala sp. probably hieroglyphica (Say) [female...]; white background pics taken by K. Kittelberger
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 6.1 mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation; identified by C. Dietrich via specimen as Graphocephala sp. probably hieroglyphica (Say) [female...]; white background pics taken by K. Kittelberger
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 6.1 mm, collected during sweep in a permanently wet depression with diverse vegetation; identified by C. Dietrich via specimen as Graphocephala sp. probably hieroglyphica (Say) [female...]; white background pics taken by K. Kittelberger
Photo by: Rob Van Epps
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: Weedy/grassy open area. Caught sweeping.
Photo by: Kaiying Chen
Wake Co.
Comment:
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: 4.5 mm, weedy vegetation