Acridoidea is a superfamily within the Orthoptera order that comprises a group of short-horned insects commonly called grasshoppers. Grasshopper and locust species are major pests of grasslands and crops in all continents except Antarctica. Economically and historically, locusts and grasshoppers are two of the most destructive agricultural pests. The most important locust species belong to the genus Schistocerca and populate America, Africa, and Asia. Some grasshoppers considered to be important pests are the Melanoplus species, Camnula pellucida in North America, Brachystola magna and Sphenarium purpurascens in northern and central Mexico, and Oedaleus senegalensis and Zonocerus variegatus in Africa. Previous studies have classified these species based on specific characteristics. This review includes six headings. The first discusses the main species of grasshoppers and locusts; the second focuses on their worldwide distribution; the third describes their biology and life cycle; the fourth refers to climatic factors that facilitate the development of grasshoppers and locusts; the fifth discusses the action or reaction of grasshoppers and locusts to external or internal stimuli and the sixth refers to elements to design management strategies with emphasis on prevention.
Key words: Acridoidea, grasshoppers, locusts, acridoid control, sustainable management.