In terms of life history and reproduction, the devastating grasshopper is very interesting. The Melanoplus devastator has used its environment and the adaptions it has made to this weather-shifting environment. They have some fascinating methods of reproduction. The females go through reproductive diapause during the hottest and dry parts of the summer (Orr et al. 1993).  This sets them apart from their closely related M. sanguinipes and is one of the main reasons why they are not the same species. The devastating grasshoppers emerge in the early to mid April where they grow to adults in July where they then enter this reproductive diapause (Roff and Mousseau 2005). Roff and Mousseau also stated that the grasshoppers then stay in reproductive diapause until September or October. During this time, the fall rain starts to come; this rain begins the growth of plants and much needed nutrients that helps push the grasshoppers out of this reproductive diapause The shortening of days also kicks starts the development of the female eggs (Pfadt 1994).  Elevation also plays a factor in the reproductive habits, hatching, and development (Dingle and Mousseau 1993). At lower elevations, the development is slowed and the devastating grasshoppers grow larger because they experience a more sheltered environment, and with a larger body size come a longer lifespan (Tatar et al. 1997).  The season length has a big impact on their life history especially in the Sierra Nevada and the soils there, because the devastator eggs hatch later in the season (Orr 1996). Once the grasshoppers come out of the reproductive diapause the females begin to lay their eggs. The eggs are laid in the soil and usually in the gravel soil on the ridges and slopes of the foothills in their rangeland habitat (Pfadt 1994). The eggs are laid in relatively small areas, and are kept pretty close between one another. Once the temperatures become too cold, the adult grasshoppers die and the eggs are left in the soil until April where their life cycle starts over again.
            The reproduction of the Melanoplus devastator depends heavily on the environment. Temperature is one of the biggest factors for the devastating grasshopper. A reason for natural selection that takes place in these grasshoppers depends heavily on the temperature that it is in throughout most of its life (Roff and Mousseau 2005). The amount of water that is in the environment surrounding this grasshopper plays hand in hand with the temperatures that area has seen in the season. Roff and Mousseau went on to state that the water rates affect the metabolic systems of the grasshopper and the temperature also effects season length. All of these in turn affect the way in which this organism reproduces. As mentioned before, the altitude plays a role in the reproduction of these animals as well. The lower the altitude the higher the temperature, and this is why this specific grasshopper has adapted to the warmer climates.
            It is all very interesting to see the kinds of ways that this organism reproduces. Their reproductive behavior sets them apart from other closely related species. It is also unique that they adapted to the environment rather than moving to an environment that they had been previously adapted to. They are very well adapted to the area that they live in and it may be one of the reasons why it is hard to see them outside of their natural habitat in the Northwest United States.


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