Froghopper

Philaenus spumarius

About

The Common Froghopper is familiar to many of us as 'cuckoo-spit' which is found on many plants during the spring and summer. In fact, this is actually the nymphs which live in a protective frothy mass of bubbles. The adult is a champion jumper and is able to leap 70cm into the air - a greater feat than the flea and similar to a human jumping over a tower block! Adults mate back-to-back, and the subsequent nymphs go through a number of stages. Both adults and nymphs feed on plant sap using specialised, sucking mouthparts.

How to identify

The adult Common Froghopper is very variable in pattern, some almost black, some black-and-white, and many shades of brown, and the nymph is green and lives in cuckoo-spit. This is just one of many species of common froghopper in the UK, which are very difficult to tell apart.

Where to find it

Widespread.

Habitats

When to find it

  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September

How can people help

Bugs and insects are food sources for many species, providing a vital link in the food chain. The Wildlife Trusts recognise the importance of healthy habitats to support all kinds of species throughout the food chain, so we are working towards a Living Landscape: a network of habitats and wildlife corridors across town and country, which are good for both wildlife and people. You can support this greener future by joining your local Wildlife Trust.

Species information

Common name
Froghopper
Latin name
Philaenus spumarius
Category
Invertebrates
Bugs
Statistics
Length: 5mm
Conservation status
Common.