Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Very Welcome Guests

When mowing the grass for the first time in weeks I noticed movement…

It was too much for that of a fly, and instantly I had a good idea what it was.

I've had them in previous years but haven't seen any for a while.




Now I know exactly where to find them, they're always on the Crocosmia






Om nom nom

I think one is a male and one is a female? Or perhaps one is a nymph and not yet developed its adult colours/patterns…I read that the females are larger than the males, so that would mean the darker one is female, but from pictures the males seem to have more colour…

Either way I'm enjoying their presence and like to say hello whenever I wander around the garden, just to make sure they're still there!

14 comments:

Cheryl said...

Hi Liz.....fantastic captures, wonderful creatures. Love them...

I had an oak cricket sitting on my marigolds by the kitchen sink the other day. Had a job catching it, even with a glass and paper, and thought it might end up down the plug hole. The story ended well fortunately......

Meredith said...

The fifth photo down is gorgeous!

I love how you wrote "Om nom nom" and didn't seem disturbed by these munching visitors to the Crocosmia. ;)

Nutty Gnome said...

Brilliant photos Liz - such skill!
We've got grasshoppers too - but unfortunately we've also got Harlequin Ladybirds.....NOT happy!(but at least your photos cheered me up)

debsgarden said...

Great photos! I'm afraid every time I see a grasshopper in my garden I have an urge to catch it! This goes back to the fifteen years or so my boys had a gecko, whose favorite food was grasshoppers and crickets. At first I swore I wouldn't catch bugs for him, but eventually I did, just feeding another member of the family. Grasshoppers nowadays, however, have a better fate!

Kala said...

I love grasshoppers & when I was a kid they were everywhere. Sadly, not so much today. These images have warmed my heart.

Liz said...

Hi Cheryl,

They’re just so amazing, and I’m so glad I leave areas of the grass long – usually by the shed- but these are at the other side of the garden where I have some bags of clay, a Rosemary I ripped up some months ago and the Crocosmia overgrows the grass… I’d left it long to allow the Clover to flower so they must’ve been in heaven. I’ve since cut most of it back, but as you can see there’s still long grass for them.

This is why I think people should have at least some grass in their gardens… A lot of people seem to be getting rid of it completely, but it’s incredibly important for birds – worms etc, but also flies and such lay their eggs in the grass and again provide food for all sorts of wildlife. I do not cut my grass short, I always leave it on the longest, mainly because I love to walk on lush grass but also for said birds and insects including the lovely Grasshoppers!

Liz said...

Hi Meredith,

Thank you very much! :)

I try to encourage wildlife where I can, and since I’m rather fascinated with the Grasshoppers, they can eat whatever they like… Well, up to a point and then I might get quite upset! :)

Liz said...

Hi Liz,

To be honest Liz, I think we all have Harlequins and it’s so hard to properly identify them that I’ve given up bothering anymore. I used to have it sussed with the ‘M’ on the head and brown legs, but then discovered that some of our natives have said ‘M’ and brown legs too!!!!
Then they can also hybridise and the Harlequins are so variable (as are some of ours!!!) that there’s little point in getting too stressed out about it.

Liz said...

Hi Debs,

Must admit I have the urge to catch them too, just like the Butterflies! Must be from childhood, and I’m too inquisitive that I want to get as close as possible…

Mmmm Gecko’s, I’d love some myself… But I only have the two Grasshoppers so I don’t think they’ll feed it for long!

Liz said...

Hi Kala,

I don’t ever remember having Grasshoppers or Crickets in our garden when growing up, so they’re a new discovery for me since moving into the city… Strange that, none in the countryside where we lived and yet I have them in the past two homes where we’ve lived, just a mere 2 miles from a major city centre…

Who’d have thought it?!

Yoke, said...

Great photos of your hoppers, Liz. I have had two living in a 2x2metre square of front garden on the left, It was great listening to their 2-way communication. Getting close up pictures of them was impossible as it is all overgrown (hiding places!) and inaccessible to wheels.

shirl said...

Great captures, Liz! Not noticed these guys/gals visit my garden yet. Wish my neigbours had more plants then maybe a bigger variety of insects/wild ife would find my garden. I do my best to encourage it ;-)

Love the patterns and detail here. Enjoy bug hunting when your capturing your GBBD Blooms :-D

Liz said...

Hi Yoke,

Glad to hear you have some Grasshoppers too, I never really ever knew we had them in the UK - and obviously Ireland... I always associate them with warmer places and eating crops...

Liz said...

Hi Shirl,

Indeed having those around you also providing spaces for wildlife is also very important and providing 'paths' is key to this. Rather than islands in a sea of very little... Otherwise Buttflies and such have a very difficult time even finding the food sources.

I think in my area it's largely a case of many people leaving their gardens to overgrow and thus providing plenty of safe areas for wildlife. One of my neighbours does very little in his garden other than cut the grass and another behind me for the past couple of years has done nothing at all... Both are elderly and cannot do much else.