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Contact information
For information on Wisconsin's rare vertebrate animals, contact:
Rich Staffen
Conservation Biologist
For information on Wisconsin's rare invertebrates, contact:
Jay Watson
Conservation Biologist

Ash-brown Grasshopper (Trachyrhachys kiowa)

Need a main photo for this animal



Ash-brown Grasshopper (Trachyrhachys kiowa), a state species of Special Concern, prefers barrens and sand prairie communities. It is known to occur in the central plains and western uplands in Wisconsin. Blue grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis), other grasses, and sedges are preferred foods. The ash-brown is believed to be active from mid-late July through mid-late September.

State status

Status and Natural Heritage Inventory documented occurrences in Wisconsin

The table below provides information about the protected status - both state and federal - and the rank (S and G Ranks) for Ash-brown Grasshopper (Trachyrhachys kiowa). See the Working List Key for more information about abbreviations. Counties shaded blue have documented occurrences for this species in the Wisconsin Natural Heritage Inventory database. The map is provided as a general reference of where occurrences of this species meet NHI data standards and is not meant as a comprehensive map of all observations.

Note: Species recently added to the NHI Working List may temporarily have blank occurrence maps.

Documented locations of Trachyrhachys kiowa in the Natural Heritage Inventory Database as of July 2015.
Summary Information
State StatusSC/N
Federal Status in Wisconsinnone
State RankS2
Global RankG5
Tracked by NHIY

Species guidance

Identification: Slender, medium-sized tan grasshopper with black splotches. Pronotum with two transverse sulci. Forewings are generally lighter colored near the pronotum, with two or three dark spots on the side of the forewings. Hind wings generally pale yellow basally in Wisconsin but are variable across the range. Tibia light blue to blue-gray.

Similar Species: Camnula pellucida has uncolored hindwings. Spharagemon and Arphia have only one transverse sulcus.

Habitat: Shrubland/chaparral, grassland/herbaceous, old field, cropland/hedgerow.

State Distribution: Central Plains and Western Uplands.

Global Distribution: Widespread across the US from Virginia west to California, with its greatest predominance in the western Great Plains and Rocky Mountain states.

Other resources

Links to additional Ash-brown Grasshopper information

Other links related to grasshoppers and allies


No additional photos are available for Ash-brown Grasshopper at this time. Please consider donating a photo to the Natural Heritage Conservation program.

Wildlife Action Plan

Wisconsin Wildlife Action Plan graphic

Natural community (habitat) associations

The table below lists the natural communities that are associated with Ash-brown Grasshopper. Only natural communities for which Ash-brown Grasshopper is "high" (score=3) or "moderate" (score=2) associated are shown. See the key to association scores for complete definitions. Please see the Wildlife Action Plan to learn how this information was developed.

Natural community Score
Pine Barrens 3
Sand Prairie 3
Oak Barrens 2
Sand Barrens 2

Ecological landscape associations

The table below lists the ecological landscape association scores for Ash-brown Grasshopper. The scores correspond to the map (3=High, 2=Moderate, 1=Low, 0=None). For more information, please see the Wildlife Action Plan.

This map shows the probability of Ash-brown Grasshopper occurring in each of Wisconsin's Ecological Landscapes.  Actual scores can be found in the table to the left.

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Landscape-Community combinations of highest ecological priority*

Ecological priorities are the combinations of natural communities and ecological landscapes that provide Wisconsin's best opportunities to conserve important habitats for a given Species of Greatest Conservation Need. The 10 highest scoring combinations are considered ecological priorities and are listed below. More than 10 combinations are listed if multiple combinations tied for 10th place. For more information, please see the Wildlife Action Plan.

* Ecological priority score is a relative measure that is not meant for comparison between species. This score does not consider socio-economical factors that may dictate protection and/or management priorities differently than those determined solely by ecological analysis. Further, a low ecological priority score does not imply that management or preservation should not occur on a site if there are important reasons for doing so locally.

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Issues/threats and conservation actions

Conservation actions respond to issues or threats, which adversely affect species of greatest conservation need (SGCN) or their habitats. Besides actions such as restoring wetlands or planting resilient tree species in northern communities, research, surveys and monitoring are also among conservation actions described in the WWAP because lack of information can threaten our ability to successfully preserve and care for natural resources.

Threats/issues and conservations actions for rare animals

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Last revised: Thursday, October 08, 2020