Friday, 7 September 2012

Roesel's Bush-crickets (Metrioptera roeselii) in Lancashire

August 10 & 31, 2012:
A small population of Roesel's Bush-crickets was first located near the coast at Fleetwood about twenty years ago. This is well to the north of the normal British range of this usually southern species and had presumably originated by individuals having been brought into the area accidentally with the help of man.


A recent search of the site on the above dates indicated it to be now well established and likely to have extended its local range appreciably. Males were singing regularly amongst rough grasslend and bramble over a 200 metres stretch of a low sheltered embankment.

A male flexing his antennae

These are quite attractive crickets, easily recognised by the prominent broad cream-coloured edge to the side plates of the pronotum. At one point at least four separate individuals were seen in a small 15cm diameter area within a bramble patch, one male rapidly flexing his long antennae to ward off another intruder.

Close-up views of a male (above)

A late nymphal stage female