Sunday, September 13, 2009
Weird Pink Grasshopper!
11-year-old boy finds pink grasshopper
A rare pink grasshopper has been found by a schoolboy taking part in a nature trail.
By Richard Savill
Published: 7:00AM BST 11 Sep 2009
Pink grasshopper: The insect was identified by wildlife officers as an adult female common green grasshopper, which has been born pink. Photo: APEX
The insect was found by 11-year-old Daniel Tate who thought it was a flower until he saw it jump and then he realised it was a grasshopper.
The insect was later identified by wildlife officers as an adult female common green grasshopper, which has been born pink.
Daniel, who attended the wildlife event at Seaton Marshes, near Sidmouth, Devon, with his great grandfather, said: "I was looking for grasshoppers when I saw something pink.
"I thought it was a flower but I saw it moving, so I tried to catch it. It jumped and then I knew it was a grasshopper."
He added: “I was really excited to hear that no one else had found a pink grasshopper at that place before.”
Fraser Rush, nature reserves officer for East Devon District Council, said: “There are millions of common green grasshoppers but I have never seen a pink one. The female comes in a variety of colours, normally different shades of green and brown. Occasionally it tends towards purple, but this is a leap beyond that to pink.”
He added: “Pink grasshoppers are unusual but not unheard of. However the intensity of the pink in this case must make it highly unusual.”
Mr Rush said the pink grasshopper was “a natural variety of the species, albeit a rare one. It has not been caused by any mutation, or any environmental effects.”
He added: “There is a chance it will have bred already and will pass on its pink gene.”
After being studied the grasshopper was released back into the reserve.