Meadow Grasshopper

Chorthippus parallelus

About

The Meadow Grasshopper is a resident of mainly damp, unimproved pastures and meadows. Grasshoppers go through a series of moults from wingless nymphs to winged adults, shedding their exoskeletons as they grow. Nymphs are present from April onwards, turning into adults in June who feed on plants and grass. Males can be seen displaying to females by rubbing their legs against their wings to create a 'song' - in this case, a regular 'rrrr' sound. After mating, the eggs are laid in the soil in a pod, ready to hatch the following spring.

How to identify

The Meadow Grasshopper is mostly green in colour, with a dark grey-brown stripe running across the flank to the eye, but brown and purplish forms also occur. It has short forewings that do not reach to the end of its abdomen and are particularly short in females. It is similar to the Field Grasshopper, but without the 'hairy chest'. Best identified by its song, which is a regular

Where to find it

Widespread.

Habitats

When to find it

  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October

How can people help

Grasshoppers are a food source for many animals, including bats, birds and amphibians, providing a vital link in the food chain. The Wildlife Trusts recognise the importance of healthy habitats to support all kinds of species throughout the food chain, so look after many grassland nature reserves for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife. You can help too: volunteer for your local Wildlife Trust and you could be involved in everything from scrub-cutting to stockwatching.

Species information

Common name
Meadow Grasshopper
Latin name
Chorthippus parallelus
Category
Invertebrates
Grasshoppers and crickets
Statistics
Body length: 1.7-2.3cm
Conservation status
Common.