Giant Grasshoppers

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

… and what I have learnt after a traumatic experience with a overly large insect. 

I have always been a proud lover of animals of all kinds. Not so much that I would change my career and become a vet… more so that I actually greet animals by saying “hello!” as I walk past them. Yes, I am more confident with meeting a dog than actually speaking to a human. And when I say that I love all animals, I mean everything but snakes, spiders, eels and now, giant grasshoppers. This is a story about fear, ones fight for their rights and most importantly, survival. 

I have to say it again… GIANT GRASSHOPPER. 

I swear this is how big it was!

Just two short weeks ago, I discovered that I have an immense fear of these bad boys. I actually used to catch the little things in my backyard when I was younger and store them into one of those plastic, sweat box jars with a few small clipping of grass. They would always die in a few short hours and it would upset me. But now, being the responsible adult that I am, and extremely fearful of the things, I am proud of young Emily. 

So, let’s get to the story. 

I had come home from work to a note from my boyfriend saying that there was a grasshopper loose in our bedroom but he couldn’t find it. Yep, he lost it. We couldn’t find it that night and ended up sleeping in the room anyways. It felt equivalent to seeing a huge spider in the room and  saying “oh well…” then going to sleep. It continuously sparked my mind and the thought of it being somewhere in our room tormented me that night. I ended up falling asleep and waking up completely forgetful of the insect.  

The next night, I was home alone. This was the night that I discovered the grasshopper. I had just got home from work and I star fished the bed thinking about how I just got through my shift. I looked up… and there it was. The giant grasshopper. 

It just sat there flapping it’s wings above me. And me, being me, I decided to back away and film it. After filming for 10 seconds and not seeing any action, I looked away from my phone and in a millisecond the grasshopper was on me! Yep, it just jumped straight across the room and on me! Like a snake going for a mouse. I must say that I am so happy that I filmed this because it is probably one of the funniest videos that I have ever seen. My scream wasn’t like a horror movie scream “arrrgghhh”, it was more like a chihuahua barking at the front door. “AH. AH. AH. AH. AH!” Hilarious. But, so freaking scary. This thing was like at least 3 inches long and coming straight for me.

For the next 2 hours we where at war. It was sitting on my fresh lilies and at first, I didn’t want to cause any harm to either the flowers or to the giant green thing, so I politely threw crumpled up balls of toilet paper at it. Wouldn’t budge. I sat back down on the couch, re-evaluating the situation and wondering what the hell am I supposed to do… After contemplating giving up my room for the night, I decided that I am human and I deserve better than a spare bedroom single bed. No insect can get in my way… 

I googled the words “help i have a giant grasshopper stuck in my room yahoo answers” and thankfully, the top search from 2010 was exactly my scenario. The only answers that I could find is that I need to get it into a glass and put it out doors. A glass? There is no way that I am going to get this giant insect into a glass! I’m going to need a water jug, or something! After I read that they can also bite, out came the chemicals. I am not getting bitten by no grasshopper if I don’t have to! 

I sprayed vinegar like there was no tomorrow. The thing was bouncing wall to wall all over the room. I was using the door as a shield, opening it to shoot. At this moment I also discovered that when they are under attack they release black ink. Great, there goes my beloved curve pillow…
 I gave up around 11pm when I was helplessly tired. It won. The grasshopper won the room and also destroyed my room, too. There was ink everywhere, tissues everywhere and it reeked of vinegar. 

Just me fighting the grasshopper 

I woke up the next morning to the sounds of the hopper banging itself back and forth on the walls. Most likely, it was trying to commit suicide because it was loud enough to wake me up a whole room away. I was too scared to even attempt to venture into grab some new clothes, so I ended up wearing whatever I could find in the laundry. I couldn’t even brush my hair because my brush was lost to the grasshopper. It wasn’t a good day. 


I came home later that day to find it dead. It was actually dead! I’m not sure if it was from the chemicals, hunger or from exhaustion but I know for a fact that it wasn’t from throwing toilet paper at it. I ended up having to wash the sheets, throw out my pillow and completely clean up all the crap that it left all over my room.

Apart from a couple of nightmares that follow once you have a fear of something, I thought it was all over… The next weekend I was pulling up onto the drive way and I heard this huge thump on my car. It must have been a bird. Damn it, now I’ve just injured a bird. Great. I casually get out of the car and… “AH. AH. AH. AH. AH. SHUT THE DOOR SO IT DOENS’T GET INSIDE THE CAR!!!!!” I’m telling you, they know what I have done to one of them. And they are coming for me. 

I am a strong believer that once you fear something, you kind of attract that fear to you. For example, I have never been swooped by a bird before because they don’t bother me… In fact, I believe their should be more plovers in my area to eat the grass hoppers. But my boyfriend despises them and is regularly attacked by birds of all kind. So, yes. Once I met my first giant grasshopper, it was not the last… I see them everywhereSeriously, I have counted 4 in a week and a half. 

And after everything that I have been mentally and physically put through, thankfully I have learnt some key life skills that I can share... 

  1. Never trust a grass hopper. Especially giant ones. If they are in your room, house or any indoor area… just let them be until they die or they will ruin everything that you own. 
  2. These things can fly, jump, move at the speed of light, bite & release black ink, so don’t fuck with them. 
  3. Also, if you think that they are still cute and not at all dangerous/ deadly/ and lethal… there really is something wrong with you. 

I did check the National Geographic's list of top deadliest animals of Australia, and sadly, there is no where that states grasshoppers can kill. But be aware, we do live in Australia, where every animal can end up killing you. 

Stay safe, girls!

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