How Did Katydids Get Their Name?
Katydids get their name from how their song sounds: “Katy did, Katy didn’t.” Mostly katydids call only at night producing the repetitive songs that are not restricted to woody vegetation.
Each species of katydid has its own rasping song, produced by stridulation, whereby the forewings, one of which is ridged, are rubbed together. Katydid songs sound raspy as their carrier frequencies are less pure and are higher than those of crickets.
The crisp, green wings act as sounding boards and the woods and fields echo and re echo with the cheerful chorus. Female katydids listen to their songs with ears tympana (hearing organs) which are on their front legs.
Although katydid songs are species-specific, different species are able to hear one another’s calls. Songs differ as to their purpose, either being reproductive, territorial, aggressive, or defensive in nature.