Saturday, 23 June 2012

Planthopper

Another minute insect, about 3mm long.  My eye seems to be drawn to them at the moment.  This is a female Ditropis pteridis, a planthopper from the Delphacidae family.  Its wings seem ridiculously small to me, approximately 1/4 the length of the abdomen in females (as below) and 1/2 the length in the male.  I'm not sure if they can fly, but they can hop like grasshoppers for quick transportation.  Generally, though, they walk slowly to avoid detection.
This is the only Delphacid to specialize on bracken, which is where I found it.

10 comments:

  1. Wow, what an amazing photo Omi! It just shows that there is fascination on every level if you look hard enough!
    J
    Follow me at HEDGELAND TALES

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  2. What a bizarre looking and rather miniscule insect. I will be checking those bracken fronds myslef now Omi!

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    1. It's really odd looking isn't it, Jason! I thought it might be a beetle larva with stalk eyes, at first. iSpot helped me out again, with an ID. The stalks are its antenna. You just never know what you're going to find!

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  3. What an odd looking little insect! Well spotted and photographed Omi. I do find these tiny creatures more and more interesting! I think many of us have done them a disservice by overlooking them just because they are so tiny

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    1. Thank you Jan :) I agree, and with digital photography it's easy to zoom right in and study the insect's features on your own computer. Fascinating times!

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  4. Superb macro shot,stunning colours.
    John.

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  5. I'm with Jason....I shall be searching any bracken I come across, now...never seen anything like this before!

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    1. Good luck Steve, it's alien-looking isn't it!

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