E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia

Pseudopomala brachyptera (Scudder, 1863)
Short-Winged Toothpick Grasshopper
Family: Acrididae
The Families of Orthoptera of BC
Photo of species

© Brian Klinkenberg  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #11573)

E-Fauna BC Static Map
Distribution of Pseudopomala brachyptera in British Columbia
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Species Information

This is an elongate slant-faced, cone-headed, grasshopper with distinctive antennae (Carpinera et al. 2004). It is grey or brown, sometimes with a notable yellow stripe with a black border running along its head and thorax. Males are usually brown, while females are more grayish brown (Brust 2007). Forewings are short and pointed. Antennae are flat, expanded centrally, long, and sword-shaped (ensiform) (Carpinera et al. 2004), giving it a distinctive appearance. Males are 23-27 mm long, females are 27-30 mm.



This species feeds primarily on grasses (Brust 2007). Research has shown that it eats Agropyron repens, Andropogon scoparius, Bouteloua gracilis, Hordeum jubatum, Panicum virgatum, Poa pratensis, and Spartina pectinata.


Adults are found from June to October, and have been observed ovipositing in September in Washingon State.


Preferred habitat for this species is open areas of tall bunchgrass though it occurs in other habitats, including wooded areas and salt-marshes (Carpinera et al. 2004). In drier areas it is usually found along streams and other wet sites (Brust 2007). Preferred habitat in British Columbia is tall, broad leaved grasses like Bromus inermis and Elymus repens (Miskelly, pers. Comm. 2010).



Global Range:

This species is found mainly across the northern part of the United States and parts of southern Canada (tall grass prairie (Brust 2007). It is found from Maine and New Jersey west to British Columbia; distribution in the Great Plains extends south to Oklahoma (Carpinera et al. 2004).

BC Range:

In British Columbia, this species is found in the Thompson-Okanagan plus the East Kootenays (Miskelly pers. comm. 2010).


This is a moderately abundant species that is never numerous, and it is not a pest (Brust 2007).

Status Information

Origin StatusProvincial StatusBC List
(Red Blue List)
NativeS2S3No StatusNot Listed
BC Ministry of Environment: BC Species and Ecosystems Explorer--the authoritative source for conservation information in British Columbia.

Additional Photo Sources

Species References

Brust, Mathew L. 2007. Fact Sheet: Short-winged Toothpick Grasshopper Pseudopomala brachyptera (Scudder) University of Nebraska. Available online.

Capinera, John L., Ralph D. Scott and Thomas J. Walker. 2004. Field Guide to the Grasshoppers, Katydids, and Crickets of the United States. Cornell University Press, Ithaca.

General References

Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2021. E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Fauna of British Columbia [efauna.bc.ca]. Lab for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed: 2022-06-28 6:01:03 AM]
Disclaimer: The information contained in an E-Fauna BC atlas pages is derived from expert sources as cited (with permission) in each section. This information is scientifically based.  E-Fauna BC also acts as a portal to other sites via deep links.  As always, users should refer to the original sources for complete information.  E-Fauna BC is not responsible for the accuracy or completeness of the original information.

© E-Fauna BC 2021: An initiative of the Spatial Data Lab, Department of Geography, UBC