Monday, August 25, 2008

The Yellow Hopper

I arrived in the office this morning to find this delightful specimen holding forth on my desk.
My very thoughtful coworker Everett captured this grasshopper in his garden and used his daughter's bug carrier to escort him into the office. We tentatively identified him as a yellow hopper. I brought him home and prepared for a mini photo shoot. The grasshopper however, had other ideas. Getting him to stay still proved extremely difficult and consequently, most of my photos are blurry.

A few turned out ok....

I noticed that he had a dinged head. If you double click on the picture (above), you'll see that the area above his compound eye is slightly smashed.
Bailey had been paying particularly close attention to the proceedings. While going in for a closeup, I observed his fuzzy head also leaning in for a better look. Then, quick as a wink, he snatched my hopper off the tree and tore across the yard with him. I was really ticked. REALLY TICKED. What a good for nothing, rotten, son of a... REALLY BAD DOG. After grabbing hold of his tail and yanking open his mouth, he spit the slightly mangled hopper out onto the grass. Bailey and I then proceeded to have a very vocal conversation on the ethics of snatching somebody's grasshopper. He is now pouting in the bedroom, behind the bed. I'm not sure I'm going to be able to show my face to our neighbors any time soon as I'm sure 'our' conversation carried quite clearly over the fence. Mothers with 3-year old daughters do not appreciate foul language, even if it's aimed at VERY BAD DOGS.
Unfortunately, Bailey did some damage. The hopper's antenna is cockamamie, the dent is worse, and most worrisome, he appears to have a large gap between his head and thorax. His outlook is not good.

Here are a couple photos, pre-mangle.

And a picture of the VERY BAD DOG.

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