A problem of taxonomic status of “banana cricket” from the Insectarium of the Moscow Zoo culture
L.S. Shestakov, V.Yu. Vedenina

Institute for Information Transmission Problems, Russian Academy of Sciences, Bolshoy Karetny per. 19, Moscow 127994, Russia. E-mail: zicrona@iitp.ru, vedenin@iitp.ru

At present time, a «banana» cricket is one of a favorite laboratory insects and a subject of different scientific and applied studies. However, its exact species-specific identification remains unclear. Clarification of taxonomic status in insects running in culture is very important for correct prediction of the characteristics of subject studied and for comparison with the members of closely related taxa. Our acoustical analysis showed that banana cricket form the Moscow Zoo culture does not belong to the Gryllus assimilis (F.) group, as it was suggested before. Analysis of acoustical signals and genitalia showed a similarity between banana cricket and a cricket species from the culture of Institute of Evolutionary Physiology and Biochemistry (Saint-Petersburg), which was supposed to be G. argentinus (Sauss.). Comparison of the calling songs and genitalia in crickets from both cultures with those in G. argentinus has not revealed similarity with this species. Thus, the taxonomic status of banana cricket and G. sp. from the IEPB culture, which, according to our data, belong to one species, remains unclear.