Crickets and Grasshoppers

There are 27 different species of Grasshoppers and Crickets in the UK. Eleven species of grasshoppers and 10 species of Bush Crickets, plus true crickets and a Mole cricket. All species of Grasshoppers can fly except the Meadow grasshopper, while only 5 of the Bush crickets can fly.

The easiest way of telling the  difference between a Grasshopper and a Cricket is the cricket has a long thin antennae, normally longer than its body while the grasshopper has short antennae.

Most crickets come out late afternoon to evening but the grasshoppers are around all day.

Grasshoppers eat grass, corn, wheat, barley and occasionally aphids, however Crickets are omnivores and scavengers, they eat rotting plant matter, leaves, fungi, insects and aphids.

Both species are a main food source for some birds, small mammals and spiders such as the wolf spider.

The Crickets and grasshoppers have a wide variety of habitat, from rough grass, to short grass, heathlands to dunes, bare earth to meadows.

Individual species of  Grasshoppers and Crickets  can be identified by their calls. This singing (stridulation) is mainly done by the males, but the females do sing, only very quietly. A bat detector can be used to listen to their song.

The Crickets make their song by rubbing their wings together unlike the Grasshopper which uses it back legs to call. Both use a file and scraper method to create the sound. I noticed that the field is quieter when it is cloudy, but as soon as the sun comes out the air is full of crickets and grasshoppers signing.

Meadow Grasshopper

  • Female usually short winged
  • Often Green
  • Burst of chirps
  • Found in rough grass
  • 2-3cm
Meadow grasshopper

Meadow grasshopper

Field Grasshopper

  • Short dry patchy grass
  • Lines on shoulder indented
  • 1.5 to 2.5 cm
  • Series of short buzzes.

IMG_1650

I’m not sure which species of grasshopper these are.

IMG_1656IMG_0368IMG_2001

Roesel’s Bush Cricket

  • Long Grass, Roadside, Field Margins
  • Cream coloured crescent on shoulder
  • Long continuous high buzz
  • Usually short winged
  • 2-3cm

IMG_0400

Long Winged Conehead

  • Green body
  • Long grass
  • 2-3cm
  • Faint and continuous song

IMG_2113IMG_2111

About Alex White - Appletonwild

This is my diary of the wildlife where I live in Oxfordshire, and sometimes the places I visit. My passion is for British wildlife, especially Badgers and Hares. I am a keen amateur photographer using a Canon SX60 HS. All the photographs on this blog are taken by myself unless stated otherwise. I am a member of A Focus on Nature, the network for Young Nature Conservationists, BBOWT, The Oxon Mammal group and The Oxfordshire badger Group. You can also follow me on Twitter @Appletonwild Instagram appletonwild
This entry was posted in creepy crawlies, insects, nature, outdoors, Oxfordshire, Rural life, Uncategorized, Wildlife, Wildlife photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Crickets and Grasshoppers

  1. New Moons For Old says:

    Fascinating.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ecology Liz says:

    Really interesting post, just wish I’d read it before I went on my Duke of Edinburgh expedition last week!

    Liked by 1 person

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