• grasshopper guide

Grasshoppers guide

The FSC Grasshoppers guide features 50 species of grasshoppers, crickets, bush crickets, ground hoppers, cockroaches, earwigs and stick insects.

Colour illustrations of each species are grouped to help you distinguish between similar-looking species. On the reverse side there’s a full identification key to living adults, designed for use in the field. You don’t need any special equipment to use this key, although a hand lens would be useful.

The chirping of grasshoppers and crickets is one of the sounds of summer. These insects are common in many habitats, and they play an essential role as a food source for birds, lizards and small mammals, and well as spiders. Crickets and bush-crickets also help to control pests, such as aphids.

This key is for the identification of adult grasshoppers and allied insects. All species hatch from the egg as nymphs, which are tiny versions of the adult, but without wings. They grow by moulting through four or more stages (or instars). In winged species, the wings develop in the later nymphal instars as wing-pads. In bush-crickets and grasshoppers having long-winged adults, the wing-pad in the last two instars are reversed or hinged upwards, so that the costal edges of both wing-pads may be seen dorsally. Short-winged adults, which may be confused with nymphs, have flatter, lobe-like wings.

The Grasshoppers guide was produced in partnership with the Natural History Museum.