Thanks to Phil Smith for these fine shots of Slender Ground-hopper taken on the Sefton coast recently.
A new grasshopper/cricket to look for, and by the sounds of things, an especially sneaky one - superb!!!
Phil explains: "I finally managed to get some half decent shots of Slender Ground-hopper. As well as the original Birkdale locality, I have also found it at three sites around Cabin Hill so it may be quite widespread in the dune system.
"Look for it in short rabbit-grazed vegetation around the edges of slacks and scrapes. However, numbers are low and it is only 10-12mm long, so it takes some finding.
"There is considerable colour variation".
I do like crickets - if you don't see the attraction, nip over to Spurn sometime in late summer and watch the Roesel's having a party on Beacon Lane.
Not much time to go looking for 'em bugs at the moment tho' - spending most of my time cleaning up litter and trying to put out fires started by morons.
Yesterday's blaze at the southern end of the Ainsdale frontals was a nightmare - 400 metres of dune vegetation consumed by a fierce wall of fire fanned by a strong easterly.
We seem happy to live in a society where it's easier to destroy than create, so I shouldn't be too surprised whenever the smoke starts rising from the dunes.
Lotsa Swallows moving today, with a Whimbrel heading north too.
Anyone seeing anything???
Eyes to the skies everyone, eyes to the skies...