Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Day 286 - Simply Brilliant and Cracking - Speckled Bush Cricket

Speckled Bush Cricket (Leptophyes punctatissima)
Hey everyone, Day 286, and another great find here when I was at Birdfair. On the Friday we got out a little early to avoid the traffic and do a bit of nature hunting. We went to the Lyndon Visitor Centre on Rutland Water. Well you didn't have to go very far to spot some great species. Visible from the windows in the visitor centre was a Great White Egret (there's a story about that!), and just outside of the visitor centre in the bushes were these little beauties.

They were quite big, as you can see in the photo they were as long as the bramble leaves that they were sitting on. They were very patient and not at all jumpy like the grasshoppers that I try and get photographs of, they are gone in a flash. Today I'm looking at the Speckled Bush Cricket.

  • The first fact is probably quite obvious - it is covered in little black speckles as you can see in the photos.
  • Something else you can tell from the photos is that they are females, the Ovipositor, the tool they use to lay their eggs, is the big curved thing at the end of their body.
Here you can see the big Ovipositor
  • They lay their eggs in late summer, usually in the bark of trees or shrubs. They overwinter as eggs before hatching in the spring.
  • When they do hatch in the spring into the nymph form they feed on a variety of flowers and plants.
  • After a while doing this, around late July, they moult into their adult form.
  • Dusk and night time is when they are most active. Males try to find females by attracting them with a high pitched noise they make with their wings (which are very short) that is so high pitched humans can barely hear them.
  • They are mainly found in the South and central areas of England as well as South Wales but may be more widespread than this.
They have great antennae too!
  • They like areas with lots of vegetation like gardens, woodland margins, hedgerows and parks.
  • It seems they like rough vegetation best, especially brambles and often sits motionless on leaves - perfectly describes how the ones I photo'd behaved.
Well that's about all I could find out about these lovely little creatures. Try these sites for more pics and info:

Hope you enjoyed,


1 comment:

  1. Amazing find Zach, what a stunning insect! You always have the coolest photos to share. - Tasha