The first two summers we were here, we saw horse lubbers on the road well north of our place. Last summer, they finally made it down here. But this summer, somewhat wetter than average, we've been under attack from them.
They're like grasshoppers, but huge grasshoppers. We have every size this year--if you walk through tall grass (which is discouraged, since there have also been reports of chiggers, a newcomer this year) you'll see hundreds of smaller grasshoppers jumping away from you. Horse lubbers might amble away from you, but it takes a lot to scare them.
They're maybe 2.5-3" long, and big around as a Cuban cigar. They hiss when they're angry or feeling threatened. They go up into trees and yuccas at night and hang around up there, then come back down during the day. There have been times when there are 20 or so in any given square yard. They can fly, and look like freaky birds when doing so.
And they're meat-eaters, and cannibals. They'll eat dead horse lubbers. They'll even eat dead rabbit, killed by Will, our current barn cat.
If they get any smarter, they'll realize that a few thousand of them could break down the doors. If you don't hear from us for a few days, that's what happened.
Below are some pictures taken this morning. First are a couple of the very tip of a yucca stalk, maybe 12-15 feet high, followed by a couple showing how they spend the night clinging to yucca leaves. Click on them to see them full-size. The big one at the end shows their cannibalistic behavior, as these two are chowing down on a dead one. The lens cap, in there for scale, is 2.5" in diameter.