Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Brownfield Lifer

I've visited this site for the last 5 years, usually to either see the Bee Orchids or survey the butterfly species. However, this time I had a different object: to be shown a relatively new and unusual summer insect. Last year, Barry Warrington located a small cricket species and after some research he discovered these were Speckled Bush Crickets, but at first the 'authorities' were sceptical and refused to believe this southern species could be found as far north as East Yorkshire. However, subsequent pictures of larger individuals after they had undergone some 'instars' (the equivalent of moults, or sloughing of their 'skins') confirmed that this former industrial site contains a thriving population of this tiny cricket. Several photographs showing different aspects of these creatures are given below.

Also present were Ringlets, Large & Small Skippers, Common Blues and a host of flora, including: Bee, Pyramidal, Southern Marsh & Common Spotted Orchids, Toadflax, Black Knapweed, Mignoette, Yarrow, Kidney Vetch, Bird's Foot Trefoil, Teasel, and many others.

Hopefully, this threatened site can be saved for the future, and may be used for educational purposes for generations of local schoolchildren.

Speckled Bush Cricket

Speckled Buch Cricket [female] (c) 2011 Barry Warrington

[click on pic to see the ovipositor at the rear of this specimen
Speckled Bush Cricket

Speckled Bush Cricket

Speckled Bush Cricket - showing ridges on the body

Ruby-tailed Wasp (c) 2011 Barry Warrington

Small Skipper (c) 2011 Barry Warrington

Bee Orchid

Large Skipper

Pyramidal Orchid


No comments: