Passover Crafts: Locusts (Schistocerca gregaria)

Crafted Shcistocerca Gregaria

The real thing!

A few weeks ago there was a locust swarm in Egypt that spread to Israel.  The swarm was made up of the common Egyptian Desert Locust scientifically known as Schistocerca gregoria.  According to Jewish bugs are generally not kosher except for certain species of locusts. According to Jewish tradition this is one of the varieties that are kosher.

When I read about the swarm I knew I had to make some locusts this year. We have made a bunch of different ones in all sorts of different color combos using the same technique. My favorites, though, are our interpretation of Schistocerca gregaria.

Newspaper to paint on
Wine corks
Acrylic paint in the colors you want to make your locust in
Paint brushes
Pipe cleaners
Tissue paper
Glue gun or Tacky Glue
Wiggly eyes
Tulip Puffy Fabric paint or a black Sharpy for the mouth.

1. Paint the cork. Leave the bottom of the cork unpainted so the cork will not stick to the paper when drying. When the cork is dry flip it over and paint the bottom.

2. Cut two 3 inch pieces of pipe cleaner for the front legs, one 7 inch piece of pipe cleaner for the back legs and one 5 inch piece for the antennas. 

3. Mold the middle of the pieces around the cork so that they fit properly when they are glued down. Then finish molding the different parts into their final shapes.

4. Cut out two 4 by 4 inch squares of tissue paper. If you are making the Schistoceria gregoria paint the wing makings on the tissue paper.

5. If you are not adding markings or when the paint is dry hold the tissue paper square at one corner and pinch the paper toward the opposite corner to form the wings.

6. When the painted cork is dry assemble the locust starting with the legs and antena. Using either the glue gun or the Tacky Glue place a thin line of glue about 1 inch long where you wants the pipe cleaners placed. FYI the front two legs are close together on the front and the long third pair of legs is placed towards the back.

7. When the pipe cleaners are dry add the wiggly eyes, mouth and wings. 

Note: The tissue paper is delicate so you may want to eliminate the wings for younger kids.


Ellen Zimmerman said…
Wow! These are so realistic -- and look like a lot of fun to make. Thanks!
I finally figured out what to do with all those corks I've been saving.

Happy Passover!

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