How Do I Get Rid of Crickets Around My Home?
Getting rid of crickets can be tricky since crickets can find their way into your home or business in a variety of ways. Wildlife Management Services pest control experts will assess your cricket problem and any cricket damage prior to using environmentally friendly pest control methods. We will then work with you to establish an effective and long-lasting cricket control plan, providing you with peace of mind when it comes to unwelcome cricket problems. And because the Eco-Wise™ Pest Control method for cricket control is environmentally friendly, there is no concern for your family and pets.
How Do I Locate a Cricket Infestation?
Determining where crickets are coming from is the first step in eliminating cricket problems. Take a close look around your home or business to try to determine the source or largest infestation area.
Where Do Cricket Infestations Occur?
- crawl spaces
- utility rooms
- crawl spaces
- soffit areas and attics
- plumbing or sewer
- under concrete slabs
- drainage culverts & pipes
- air conditioning units
- sewer vents
- sump areas
- damp basements
- pipe chases
- water meter boxes
- sewer junction boxes
Questions to Ask About Cricket Problems:
- Where have you seen crickets?
- How many crickets have you seen?
- What time of the day?
- Where do crickets go when startled?
- What size crickets are you seeing?
- Have you seen crickets outside?
- Do you have a crawl space?
- Where is your water meter box?
- Have you had any moisture problems sewer backups?
- Are your gutters clean and functional?
- Do you have an irrigation system?
- Are your attic & eave areas well ventilated?
What Kind of Crickets Do I Have In My House?
There are several crickets commonly found in the United States.
Camel, Cave & Stone Crickets
Camel, cave and stone crickets are commonly found outdoors around buildings. They are typically found in cool, moist situations such as under mulch, stones, railroad ties, woodpiles, debris, etc. They are nocturnal or active at night and hide during the day. Other places they can be found around homes are in wells, drainage culverts/pipes, under A/C units or their concrete pads, sheds, etc. Indoors, they can become problems in damp basements, utility rooms, crawl spaces, garages and occasionally in attics. They often invade structures.
Camel, cave and stone crickets get their common names due to their unique appearance and habitat. The camel cricket because of their humpbacked appearance, the cave cricket group because of being commonly found in caves, and the stone cricket group probably because they are often found under stones. They are widespread in the United States and in the world. Adult camel, cave and stone crickets are about 1/2 - 1 1/4 inches in body length with the female's egg laying structure often exceeding half its body length. Their color is light to dark brown, often molted with lighter or darker areas. Antennas are threadlike, much longer than the body, with basal segments touching or nearly so. These crickets are also wingless and without sound producing structures.
Field crickets can severely damage or destroy field crops and vegetable crops. The genus Gryllus is widely distributed throughout the Americas or New World and consists of about 25 species in the United States. Outdoors around buildings field cricket infestations are typically found in moist situations such as in mulched areas, weedy plant beds, in and around woodpiles, stones and debris, etc. Their presence is often indicated by the male's chirping, which for most species occurs during the day and night, their chirping can become irritating when they are inside. Field cricket infestations do not survive indoors for long periods of time and usually die off by winter.
Adult field crickets range from 1/2 - 1 1/8 inch long. Their color is typically black but varies to brownish yellow or straw yellow. The antenna is threadlike, much longer than the body. Adult females have a long tube like egg laying structure located at the tip of the abdomen it is called an ovipositor that is used to lay eggs in the ground. Nymphs are similar to adults except smaller, and lack wings and an ovipositor. Field crickets usually overwinter in the egg stage.
The common name comes from the fact that these crickets often enter houses where they can survive indefinitely. Having been introduced from Europe, the house cricket species is found throughout the United States but is a pest primarily east of the Rocky Mountains. House crickets typically surface feed, leaving the surface roughened from pulling or picking the fibers loose while feeding. Their feeding sometimes results in an irregular matted network over the surface, or if the house cricket infestation is heavy, large areas of the fabric may be eaten out. Fecal pellets can be found on or about the damaged materials. The larger fecal pellets are about 1/16 - 1/8 inch long and about 1/32 inch wide, with the pellets almost or entirely lacking longitudinal ridges.
During warm weather, house crickets typically live outdoors and especially garbage dumps. With the approach of cold weather, they seek sheltered places such as sheds and houses. House cricket problems are nocturnal or active at night and usually hide in dark warm places during the day. Their presence is indicated by the male's chirping, which is done by rubbing their front wings together. His "calling song" serves to attract females.
Outside, house crickets are often attracted to electric lights in large numbers, sometimes by the thousands, and they rest on vertical surfaces, such as light poles and house walls. Outside, they feed on plants and dead or live insects, including crickets.
House cricket problems occur when they enter homes seeking moisture. When these crickets enter homes, many kinds of clothing and even carpets can be damaged. Favorite fabrics include wool, cotton, silk and synthetics. Clothes soiled with perspiration are especially attractive to house cricket infestations. They damage large areas of fabrics as opposed to the small holes typical of clothes moths or other fabric pests.
House cricket adults are about 3/4 - 7/8 inch long. Their color is light yellowish brown with 3 dark cross bands on their head. The antenna is threadlike, longer than the body. Their wings lay flat on the back. Adult females have a long tube like egg laying structure called a ovipositor, located at the top of the abdomen. Nymphs look like adults except smaller, lack wings and an ovipositor.
Jerusalem crickets are nocturnal and spend the day in burrows or under various objects that are lying on the ground such as rocks, stones, logs, etc. Jerusalem cricket infestations have high moisture requirements, so they are most active in the spring after the rains of winter have loosened up the soil and may sometimes be seen crawling around after sundown. During the hot, dry summers they burrow deeply and only occasionally come out at night.
Jerusalem cricket problems scavenge on organic debris, but also feed on potatoes and other root crops, and live and dead insects. Unlike other crickets, females will often kill and eat the male after mating.
Jerusalem crickets often invoke fascination and/or fear when they are encountered because of their large size of about 2 inches and a robust/heavy body. They are nuisance pests when they come indoors and will sometimes bite if roughly handled. They can become a garden or agricultural nuisance when they feed on potatoes and other root crops. Jerusalem crickets are found west of the Rocky Mountains in Oklahoma and Texas.
Adult Jerusalem crickets are typically up to about 2 inches long, wingless and very robust with massive heads and thorax. Their color is yellowish brown to brown, with wide blackish bands on the abdomen across anterior margins. Antennal bases/insertions are widely spread, but are at least the length of the first antennal segment. Nymphs are similar to adults but smaller. Because of their nocturnal and subterranean habits, little is known about their biology. To attract a mate, males and females drum the floor of their burrow or the ground with their abdomen. Females make nest burrows where they deposit their eggs. Nymphs may molt up to 10 times. The typical life cycle (egg to egg) extends over 2 years.
Mole crickets have a major spring flight and a minor autumn flight. Spring flights are from March to May for the southern mole cricket and from April to July for the tawny mole cricket. Autumn flights occur from October into December on warm evenings. These crickets are nocturnal. Large flights usually occur after heavy rains during warm weather, starting shortly after sunset and lasting about 1 hour. Mole cricket problems are strongly attracted to lights at night.
Mole cricket infestations are found in the light sandy to loam soil, never in heavy soil. Each cricket has its own burrow which may be up to 14 inches deep. Mole cricket problems come to the surface at night to feed, tunneling some 10-20 feet a night.
Nymphs are cannibalistic but feed mainly on roots, organic matter, other insects, and other small organisms. Southern mole cricket infestations feed more on insects whereas the tawny mole cricket feeds mostly on plant roots. They attach to plant roots, tubers and underground stems. Extensive damage has been done to seedlings of tobacco, sugar cane, ornamentals, tomatoes and other vegetables. However, mole cricket infestations are a most serious pest of turf grass.
The mole cricket's common name comes from their resemblance to miniature moles, with shovel like front legs adapted from digging and burrowing, and because they used to be considered a subfamily of the cricket family Gryllidae. They are attracted to lights and occasionally enter structures where they are nuisance pests. Mole Crickets can be pests around lighted swimming pools, flying to the lights and clogging the pool skimmers. They are a major pest of turf grass and low-growing fruits, such as strawberries in the southeastern United States.
There are 7 species of mole cricket distributed in the eastern and southwestern United States. Mole cricket adults are about 3/4 - 1 5/8 inches long. They are brownish to pinkish brown, sometimes with darker markings. The antenna is threadlike, relatively short and less than half their body length. Their front legs are broad and shovel like similar to moles. Nymphs are similar to adults but lack wings.
Call Wildlife Management Services to Get Rid of Crickets.
Eco-Wise™ has the knowledge, equipment, and skills to take care of all your cricket problems and will show you how to get rid of crickets for good!
Wildlife Management EcoWise Pest Control Services are available throughout the United States and Canada. If you are not in the Minneapolis area, please call 1.800.274.8837 to find an office near you. We have the professional wildlife management solutions you need!
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