Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Where did the grasshoppers go?


Now that I am blogging about bugs, I have a question.

There used to be so many grasshoppers on the farm during the summer months. But now when I visit in the summer, I don't notice any. What happened? Is there a pesticide that wiped them out?

9 comments:

Laura said...

I saw some here in Michigan this year. Maybe the mosquitoes scared them away. Or cicadas carried them off like the flying monkeys carried off Toto and Dorothy. It could also be the weather.

ACravan said...

The same question has occurred to us in Tuxedo Park, NY. I believe (and Caroline shares your concern) that your surmise is probably correct. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, Nin. Curtis

Nin Andrews said...

Funny, Laura. I would rather have the mosquitoes carried off . . .
And Happy Thanksgiving to your family, Curtis!

TC said...

Well, with last year's droughts in the interior, the US Dept of Agriculture officially declared that a plague of grasshoppers and Mormon crickets was upon our house.

They allotted $5.6 million on bug abatement, but the money was all used up before the swarms could even be accurately counted.

On the other hand, there's a rather unpleasant nematomorphic organism called the hairworm (well, perhaps to another hairworm, not so unpleasant) which is parasitic in terrestrial arthropods like the grasshopper and the Mormon cricket. They are aquatic by nature and intent, these hairworms, and when they grow large within a host (which they tend to do), they manipulate its behaviour by causing it to seek out water. Pretty soon all the poor grasshopper or cricket wants to do is plop into the drink.

This is the phenomenon known as grasshopper suicide.

TC said...

(That's a mighty good looking grasshopper, by the way... peering down like a Narcissus Grasshopper at its reflection in the water, before the fatal plunge?)

TC said...

All the grasshoppers here have drowned in the rain, but the little air bubbles they have left behind are singing, "Happy Thanksgiving, Nin!"

Glenn said...

They've gone the same way as the bees and the frogs ...

chrism said...

Oh, I know where they went. They all came here, all the brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles, and their friends feasted on my garden. They left us nothing, no squash, no spinach, no lettuce, no chard, only a radish or two. You can have them back if you'd like!?

Unknown said...

I am from Long Island NY and this post was the first result when I googled "where did the grasshop". It auto filled in pers go. So I guess I am not the only person who noticed! I am almost fifty and as a kid I used to catch them and play with them. Big juicy brown ones. One day long ago they were gone. Scary.