Horse Lubber (Taeniopoda eques)

Order: Orthoptera (or-THOP-ter-a) (Info)
Family: Romaleidae
Genus: Taeniopoda
Species: eques


This bug has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Tucson, Arizona (2 reports)
El Paso, Texas

Members' Notes:


On Jun 14, 2015, maccionoadha from Halifax, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

I found this explanation for it's name on

"eques is Latin for "(horse) rider, knight, horse and rider"
The bright lines on the head make it look from the side like a horse's head with a bridle, and the overall effect is reminiscent of the armor, harness and other equipment on a medieval knight's horse- which probably explains both the common and scientific names."

Also, the vernacular term lubber refers to the flightless, terrestrial nature of the insects.


On Jan 1, 2009, tucsonjill from Lincoln, NE (Zone 5a) wrote:

I have mixed feelings about these guys. Probably the most attractive grasshopper I've ever seen, but also voracious. They decimated my rain lilies in no time at all.


On Oct 17, 2007, franj from Tucson, AZ wrote:

One of the largest (2.5 to 3.5 inches long) and most colorful grasshoppers I have come across in Arizona, Taeniopoda eques is native from Arizona to Texas and south into Mexico. It feeds on desert shrubs including Mesquite and can be somewhat destructive. I've yet to find any info about it's common name, "Horse Lubber".

Only the males have wings large enough to fly and they are clumsy flyers at best. But if you happen to spot a male in flight (and I have, this one is male) you are treated to a display of fluttering scarlet wings that immediately grabs your attention.

Adults emerge anywhere from August to November, feed, mate and die. Eggs overwinter in the ground and will not hatch in drier years. It is reported the adults will exude a foul smelling foam when... read more