Grasshoppers belong to the family of insects called Orthoptera. There are over 10,000 types of grasshoppers found the world over. Only 50 percent of the grasshoppers end up surviving and reach adulthood. Grasshoppers are purely vegetarians. That is right! They survive on plants and leaves making them herbivorous animals. You can find these insects on grasses, gardens, lawns forests where there are fallen leaves and litter. They munch on carrots, broccoli, barley, lettuce, alfalfa, corn wheat and oats. A few grasshopper species having long antennas (called long horned species) eat dead insects.
They feast on small foliage, weeds, flowers, vegetables and stems of plants. They are very effective in removing weeds and other unwanted plants growing in a garden and can therefore be useful creatures to have around.
Farmers regard them as pests. They cause undue damage by munching on leaves, and roots, causing terrible crop wastages and losses every year. In some instances, these insects will be found flying in huge groups swarming the entire area making eradication quite difficult. The problem is aggravated in summer. Scientists have not yet found a perfect insecticide to treat grasshopper menace.
Apart from their irritating eating habits, people find their noises to be equally if not more irritating. They make screeching noises to convey messages to their counterparts. They rub their wings with each other or to their legs. What appears as noise to us is in fact their way of singing melodious tunes to attract females! They also sing to alert other grasshoppers if they perceive danger.
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