Pink grasshopper found on Seaton Marshes

ONE of the highlights of the first 'Minibeasts on the Marshes' event associated with Seaton Carnival was the discovery of a pink grasshopper.

ONE of the highlights of the first Minibeasts on the Marshes event associated with Seaton Carnival was the discovery of a pink grasshopper.

Staff and volunteers from East Devon District Council's Countryside team worked with Seaton Visitor Centre Arts group and Windrush Willow to provide activities involving pond dipping, minibeast hunting, wetland crafts and willow dragonfly weaving. Daniel Tate, who came to the event with his 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 I then knew it was a grasshopper.

"I was really excited to hear that no one else had found a pink grasshopper at that place before."

The insect had everyone perplexed as nothing like it had been seen in the area before. Bright pink on the grasslands of Seaton Marshes is not a great survival strategy but this one was an adult, so it was doing well. Fraser Rush, nature reserves officer, later identified it from the photo as the Common Green Grasshopper, which sometimes occurs in pink and purple colour variations.

Member Champion for Seaton, Councillor Stephanie Jones, who approached EDDC about organising the event to coincide with Seaton Carnival, said: "I can't thank the Countryside team enough for all their support at this year's carnival. They gave up their Bank Holiday Saturday so that over 100 people, mainly children, could learn more about the Marshes and have fun at the same time.

"Both town councillor Sophie Connell, who also went along to help, and I were impressed with the enthusiasm and knowledge that was so cheerfully displayed by the whole team. The enjoyment of the children, and adults, taking part in the activities was infectious.