Ps. I never thought to “spot” these as they are so common, but decided they are such a feature of wildlife here that it makes sense even if its just for me to look up exactly what they are. I had already deduced that I have the long nest ones, not the upside down cone nest ones. I’m assuming they must be territorial?
The Giant Grasshoppers are the largest grasshoppers in Australia. They also commonly known as Giant Valanga and Hedge Grasshoppers, and are native to Australia. The adult size varies from 60-90mm. Colours can vary. I would say this grasshopper is a juvenile as it's quite small.
This is one of the oddest spottings I've made in quite some time, and I really didn't know what I had found at the time other than it was some sort of nest. As it turns out, this is the nest of Ochrogaster lunifer, commonly known as the processionary caterpillar (which becomes the bag-shelter moth), and these caterpillars are famous for walking in single file head-to-tail processions. During the day the caterpillars shelter communally in a bag nest made of silk, frass (a type of insect excrement), shed skins, and other debris. Sometimes the nest is located on a shoot at the end of a branch, or sometimes high on the trunk. It can also be on the ground at the base of the food plant. The last two photos in this set show a second nest I found only a short distance from the first, but in slightly better condition. Both nests were found on a eucalypt species known as poplar box (Eucalyptus populnea), a common tree in the area. PS: The hairs from shed skins in such a nest can get blown around and spread over adjacent vegetation, which is of concern for humans and animals in the area. These hairs can actually cause horses to abort their foals. Here's an article about just that.... https://www.australiangeographic.com.au/...
One good reason why I bring my washing in before dark. This is a Tessellated Stick Insect, and because of its overall size and antennae length, is easily identified as a female. Males are smaller, but have longer antennae. Males can also fly, whereas the females can't. They are a common species of stick insect endemic to the Brisbane area. They usually feed on eucalyptus, but also adapt to other trees and grasses. Most other species of stick insects usually are low in population, but this species is known to occur in plague proportion from time to time. The name comes from the dark black tessellations, which resemble small spines on the thorax. PS: I estimate the total length of this female to be 28-29 cms (around 11 inches) from tip of the outstretched forelegs (right of the photo) to the tail fillaments. She's quite a large specimen.