If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

18 September, 2009

Common Field Grasshopper (Chorthippus brunneus)

Having shunned grasshoppers as 'too difficult' for so many years when I got the chance recently to spend a day with one of Dorset's authorities on them I 'jumped' at the chance!

As always, it seems, the same process applies, get to know a couple of species well and then you will know when you have found something different. When you do find something difference get to know that well. Over time your knowledge grows.

So I have started with a couple of really abundant ones, one of which is the Common Field Grasshopper. This one is 'quite' easy as it predominantly dark brown with lighter markings on the abdomen. It also has those two light stripes on the shoulders (but so do other species!).

This species, although the 'Common Field', does like patches of clear ground and against bare earth the are quite well camouflaged. Once they 'fly' of course, and you follow them to where they land they have no hiding place. If you catch them when the sun goes in you can get quite close.

(Sorry I lost the tip of one antennae)