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Schistocerca cancellata locust – gregarious phase

Schistocerca cancellata locust - gregarious phase

The South American locust Schistocerca cancellata had not been seen in massive swarms in nearly 60 years before 2015. Researchers are now studying the locust to learn about the triggers that drive the locusts’ switch to their swarming phase. Here, adult females in their swarm, or “gregarious,” phase lay eggs in the soil. Normally they lay solitary egg pods, but during swarming they lay eggs in groups, which then further drives the swarm numbers and behavior when the nymphs hatch. (Photo originally published in Pocco et al 2019, Annals of the Entomological Society of America)

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