Saturday, October 30, 2010


We came upon this male field grasshopper Chorthippus brunneus sunbathing on the steps down to Hawthorn Hive on the Durham Coast, this afternoon. His courting days are over and he was making the most of the warm mid-day sun, before the frosts arrive and bring an end to his short life. Somewhere there will be packets of eggs, carefully inserted amongst grass roots by his mate who he would have serenaded by sawing the pegs on his legs back and forward across those membranous wings, in the process of stridulation.  Next spring they'll hatch and the nymphs that emerge will grow and moult four times before they reach maturity - and then the next generation of chirruping grasshoppers will begin the whole cycle all over again.
You can listen to a field grasshopper's song here

For more grasshoppers, click here


  1. Lovely picture, Phil. Such great detail. I enjoyed listening to the sound recording and reading about the grasshoppers. I had no idea there were 30 breeding species in the UK - that might be something else to study over the winter.

  2. I enjoyed reading your article. It is like a piece of good literature.