Animal tracks

Grasshopper sheds skin in a perfect replica

April 4, 2013 at 10:37 AM ET

In a nature show caught on camera, a bright green grasshopper emerged from its old skin, leaving a perfect replica behind.

Grasshopper
Adhi Prayoga / Solent News
The grasshopper leaves behind a perfect copy of itself.

According to photographer Adhi Prayoga, who watched the transformation from his garden, it took 40 minutes for the insect to expertly emerge from its exoskeleton on a piece of grass on March 29.

Grasshopper emerges from its old skin.
Adhi Prayoga / Solent News
The insect shed its exoskeleton while hanging on a piece of grass in the photographer's garden.

Prayoga, 41, who lives in Mataram, Indonesia, told Solent photo agency that he saw the grasshopper turn its head while clinging to the grass. "Carefully, she moved her body to release the old skin and I was amazed as she successfully separated from the intact shell," he said. "Then I saw some ants interested in the molting process start to run up the stem."

An ant took hold of the casing before it fell to the ground.

Ant holds grasshopper.
Adhi Prayoga / Solent News
An ant holds on to the grasshopper exoskeleton before it drops to the ground.


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