Jul 03 2019

MATCH DAY 9 – England v. New Zealand


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It’s another must-win game for England if they’re to guarantee a semi-final place, even after a much improved performance saw off India in their last game. New Zealand will also be battling hard for a place in the last four, and if other results go their way, they can still progress even if they don’t win today. Pakistan and Bangladesh also have a chance to qualify as the group stage is in its final week. Nail biting stuff!

Representing New Zealand in the Heathland Cricket World Cup is the giant weta…

We’ve saved the biggest until last – the giant weta is the world’s heaviest insect! There are several species distinct to different islands – the one pictured here is the Cook Strait Giant Weta, weighing up to 70g! They’re flightless, nocturnal and vegetarian, favouring flowers as food.

The decline of the giant weta is a sadly familiar story, one of introduced mammal predators and habitat destruction, but conservation programmes are now trying to save these armoured antipodean arthropods.

Giant weta (credit: Wvermaat)

And just in case…

If the unthinkable happens and we don’t meet our trusty field cricket again, let’s recap what we’ve learnt so far…

  • Field crickets can’t fly – but can walk 100m in a day!
  • They are omnivorous.
  • Males stridulate (sing), to attract a mate and defend territory, by rubbing wings together.
  • They were reduced to one colony of about 100 individuals in the 1980s.
  • Now there are 6 colonies thanks to the great work of reintroduction programmes.
  • Over 300 “singing” males at RSPB Farnham Heath in 2019
  • As a “Back from the Brink” species the future looks encouraging and it may even be seen on a Thames Basin Heaths heathland near you one day!

Enjoy the cricket! Warden Steve.

 

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