T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Weta (Tree) Genus: Hemideina

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Orthoptera
Suborder: Ensifera
Family: Anostostomatidae
Genus: Hemideina
Species: Hemideina thoracica (Auckland), Hemideina crassidens (Wellington), Hemideina trewicki (Hawke's Bay), Hemideina femorata (Marlborough and Canterbury), Hemideina ricta (Banks Peninsula), Hemideina broughi (West Coast), Hemideina maori (mountains of the South Island)

Tree weta are species of weta in the genus Hemideina of the family Anostostomatidae. There are seven species of tree weta and all are endemic to New Zealand. They are arboreal (except for H. maori), nocturnal and they hide in hollows in tree branches during the day and feed on leaves, flowers, fruit and scavenge dead invertebrates at night. Female tree weta lay their eggs into the soil by inserting their ovipositor into the ground. The eggs hatch about 8 months later and the nymphs look like tiny versions of their parents.

Hemideina thoracica (Auckland tree weta or tokoriro) occurs in throughout the North Island apart from the Wellington-Wairarapa region.

Hemideina crassidens (Wellington tree weta) occurs in Wellington, the Wairarapa, the northern parts of South Island, and the West Coast.

Hemideina broughi (West Coast bush weta) overlaps with the Wellington tree weta in Nelson and the northern portion of the West Coast area.

Hemideina femorata (Canterbury tree weta) occurs in Marlborough and Canterbury.

Hemideina maori (Mountain stone weta) occurs in the drier areas of the South Island, above the tree line, from the Kaikoura Ranges south to Rock and Pillar Range in Otago. It abandoned life in trees millions of years ago in favour of crevices and cavities under rocks.

Hemideina ricta (Banks Peninsula tree weta) occurs only on Banks Peninsula.

Hemideina trewicki (Hawke's Bay tree weta) occurs in the southern Hawke's Bay where it's range partially overlaps with Auckland tree weta.

Thanks to S.A Trewick., P.M Johns., Fitness J., M Morgan-Richards. And Weta Geta - an online guide to New Zealand Orthoptera for the above information. Retreived from www.Wetageta.massey.ac.nz