Roesel's Bush-cricket - Metrioptera roeselii

Description

Length 13-26 mm. Usually dark brown and yellow, but sometimes tinged green or rarely completely green. Broad cream-coloured margin all the way around the sides of the pronotum and three pale yellow spots on the sides of the thorax. Usually short-winged (brachypterous) and flightless, but a fully winged form able to fly (form diluta) occurs. It is thought that the fully winged form usually makes up less than 1% of the total population, but it may become slightly more numerous in hot summers.

Habitat

Originally found on saltmarshes and dunes in coarse vegetation but currently expanding its range west and north to urban wasteland, agricultural set-aside, marsh areas and coarse grassland.

When to see it

Nymphs emerge in late May and June. Adults present from late July until autumn.

Life History

Omnivorous, but feeding mostly on grass and other vegetation.

UK Status

Becoming increasingly common in the English Midlands and in south-eastern England.

VC55 Status

Previously uncommon in Leicestershire and Rutland but thought to be increasing in our area. It is likely to expand thanks to climate change as it does best after hot summers.

Further Information

First recorded in Rutland in 2001, where now locally common, and in Leics in 2006; spreading rapidly.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map

UK Map