Numerous color morphs of the southern twostriped walkingstick (or “devil rider”), Anisomorpha buprestoides (Stoll, 1813) (Phasmatodea: Areolatae: Pseudophasmatidae: Pseudophasmatinae: Anisomorphini), predominantly from Florida, are described and illustrated. Three main color forms of A. buprestoides are recognized: white, orange and brown. Type specimens of A. buprestoides have been lost, but colored illustrations by its original describer are compared with the most similar color form described here. This is intended to support future selection of a neotype, which will become necessary for conducting any confirmed taxonomic studies. The common brown form is highly variable in size and coloration and exhibits a wide distribution, mainly throughout the more northern portions of the dispersal of A. buprestoides. The white and orange forms are restricted to rather small localities in central Florida and show affiliation with dryer habitats. The distribution of A. buprestoides, based on collecting records from various museum collections, extends as far south as Key West, FL, but the northern boundary of its range is unclear. The day-hiding, defensive, and oviposition behaviors are described and illustrated for the three recognized color forms and are shown to differ considerably with dependence on the respective habitat. A list of known host plants and alternative food plants used in captive breeding of A. buprestoides is provided, which proves this species to be rather polyphagous. Captive breeding on alternative food plants for three generations has shown the coloration to remain constant independent of food plant used. Our observations lead us to the conclusion that A. buprestoides is in every aspect capable of adaptation to ecological pressure.
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Vol. 102 • No. 2