Today I noticed a different species of bush cricket – eating a doughnut (!) – on the old couch that serves as my dogs’ bed:
I am not much of a video shooter, and not good at it, but today I just HAD to film this little one (about 20mm long) eating something so totally un-natural for a katydid. I am fascinated by the mouthparts of insects in general, and watching a grasshopper’s labium and palpi in action while it was literally digging into the doughnut was a first for me. I had never realized that the palpi are not only used as tactile tools but actually serve as fingers to feed stuff into the mouth. Also, grasshoppers seem so stiff on photos, yet this one being bent over the greasy doughnut revealed the wrinkly whitish/greyish leathery skin of the neck under the shield (reminded me a bit of a tortoise). There was a small dead fly stuck on one of the crumbs, and he didn’t seem to mind the protein. He continued to lift his middle legs, likely because they got sticky (reminded me of a cat shaking its hind legs when wet) before he paused his meal to clean them.
Assuming that someone else here might also be interested to see, here’s the clip:
Afterwards he just relaxed and slept for at least two hours right there, on the dog couch: