Around a third of the locust species in Germany are considered to be endangered. This emerges from the new Red List for these species, as announced by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) in Bonn. This would cover all 82 established locust species and the only native mantis species, the European praying mantis.

According to the information, a total of 26 species or 31.3 percent are considered endangered. Another 9 species (10.8 percent) are not yet endangered, but are on the warning list. This means that 41 species are currently safe. This corresponds to half of the native species, including well-known ones such as the common grasshopper, the field cricket and the green hay horse.

Habitats at risk

There are winners and losers: “The steppe grasshopper must now be considered lost,” explained the BfN. The previously harmless field grasshopper is now on the warning list. Heat-loving species such as the European praying mantis benefited from climate change and continued to spread in Germany. However, the marsh grasshopper’s habitat has shrunk significantly due to more frequent droughts in summer due to climate change and the use of drainage systems.

“Many species of locusts suffer from the fact that their habitats either disappear completely, become fragmented or the quality is severely deteriorated,” commented BfN President Sabine Riewenherm. This applies above all to intensively used landscapes, but also to nature reserves. The effects of climate change are also becoming increasingly clear. The losers included species that required a very humid habitat or a cool mountain climate.

The nationwide red lists are published by the Federal Office and coordinated on its behalf by the Red List Center.