3. Migratory locust: Locusta migratoria

​​​​Adult description 3 of 15

Graphic: side view of an adult migratory locust - note the dark mouth. Graphic: top view of an adult migratory locust showing faintly smoky blue/green hindwing.

Size: Females 40 to 65 mm, males 35 to 45 mm

Adult Description: Colour varies from mainly browns to greens in the solitary phase but some gregarious phase locusts have a bluish body with a yellow head and legs. In profile the head is slightly low​​er than the thorax but both are raised above the line of the wings. The thorax has a central ridge which is partly lost in the swarm phase. Folded forewings dark with thin light markings. Hind wings clear or sometimes faintly smoky blue/green. The rear leg tibia vary from straw to wine red coloured. The mouth is dark. Throat peg absent but has a hairy 'chest' (underside of thorax).

Confusion with Australian plague locust: At a distance it is a similar shape but is much larger.

Confusion with yellow winged locust: Similar shape, with raised thorax in profile and robust large locust with similar body colours in some phases (compare photos).

Unique features: A dark mouth and a hairy underside of thorax. The large size with a clear rear wing and raised thorax profile distinguish it from the Australian plague locust. The clear rear wing, lighter coloured tibia, mottled rather than strongly marked forewings and less domed thorax profile, distinguish it from the more similar yellow winged locust.

Further information on this species: Description of nymph, More images, Distribution, Biology

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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