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Crickets

Facts, Identification & Control

Latin Name

Order Orthoptera

Families include but not limited to: Gryllacrididae, Gryllidae, Gryllotalpidae, Rhaphidophoridae and Stenopelmatidae

Appearance

Size and appearance vary according to species, but most crickets have long thin antennae and large jumping hind legs.

crickets

Cricket Chirp

Crickets have different chirping “songs” for fighting, sounding an alarm or attracting a mate. Click hear to listen to a cricket “sing.”

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Behavior, Diet & Habits

Most crickets prefer damp moist conditions. Many are active at night, and some are attracted to lights.

Crickets are omnivorous, meaning that they will eat plant- and animal-based materials.

Reproduction

Crickets complete a gradual metamorphosis from egg to nymph to adult.

Signs of Cricket Infestation

The most likely signs of crickets are sightings of the crickets or the songs for those species that sing.

More Information

Cricket Facts

Camel Cricket Illustration Camel Cricket Illustration

House crickets measure 16 to 22 mm in length. They are light yellowish-brown in color and exhibit three dark bands atop their heads. Field crickets are brown or black in color and can grow to measure more than 2.5 cm in length. Ground crickets are brown and much smaller than other common cricket species.

Held flat against the body, a cricket’s wings cover at least half of the abdomen. However, some species are wingless. The cricket’s antennae are approximately half the length of the head and abdomen combined. Females feature a long ovipositor in the rear, which is used to lay eggs within the soil, and both sexes have segmented, taillike appendages known as cerci. Young crickets appear similar to adults, although their wings are underdeveloped. Crickets often dwell beneath rocks and logs and are nocturnal in nature. They are omnivorous scavengers and renew soil minerals by breaking down plant materials. Crickets also provide food for other animals, including birds, rodents and lizards. However, they are a destructive presence in agricultural communities, as they feed on crops and seedlings. When attracting a mate, male crickets create sound by rubbing their forewings against each other. Their songs can identify cricket species. These sounds can prove troublesome at night, when they often are loud enough to interrupt sleep.