Dark Bush-cricket

Dark Bush-cricket ©Philip Precey

Dark bush-cricket

Scientific name: Pholidoptera griseoaptera
The Dark bush-cricket, as its name suggests, is dark brown or reddish. It can be found in woodlands, hedgerows and gardens throughout summer. Its irregular chirpings are a familiar sound of summer.

Species information

Statistics

Length: 1.5-1.7cm

Conservation status

Common.

When to see

May to November

About

A common invertebrate across the southern half of England, the noisy, irregular chirpings of the Dark bush-cricket are a familiar feature of late summer. Found in gardens, hedgerows and woodland edges, Dark Bush-crickets can often be seen in quite large numbers, sunbathing on Bramble patches. However, males are very aggressive, defending their territories against intruders. Females lay their eggs in late summer in rotting wood or bark crevices; they emerge 18 months later, so odd-year and even-year Dark bush-crickets never meet.

How to identify

The Dark bush-cricket lives up to its name: it's dark to red-brown, with a paler patch along the top of the thorax, and a yellow-green belly. The female has an up-curved ovipositor.

Distribution

Found in Central and Southern England, and South Wales.

Did you know?

Although the Dark bush-cricket is a familiar sound of summer, some of the more high-pitched songs of crickets and grasshoppers are inaudible to human ears - they can only be heard using a bat detector.

How people can help

Our gardens are a vital resource for wildlife, providing corridors of green space between open countryside, allowing species to move about. In fact, the UK's gardens provide more space for nature than all the National Nature Reserves put together. So why not try planting native plants and trees to entice birds, mammals and invertebrates into your backyard? To find out more about encouraging wildlife into your garden, visit our Wild About Gardens website: a joint initiative with the RHS, there's plenty of facts and tips to get you started.