Several cricket species are found in Texas. The most common species invading houses are the house cricket (Acheta domesticus), the field cricket (Gryllus assimilis) and the camel cricket (Ceuthophilus).
Crickets may damage closthes, paper, ornamental plants and other materials not to mention they annoy homeowners. At night, many crickets congregate around lights; when the dead accumulate, the unpleasant odor is very unpleasant.
House and field crickets are common everywhere. The house cricket is 3/4 to 1 inch long and light yellowish brown. The field cricket is ½ to 1 ¼ inches long and dark brown or black with a robust body. Both species have large hind legs adapted for jumping. Their life cycle includes egg, nymph and adult.
The camel cricket is wingless, humpbacked insect with the head bent down and backward. The antennae are longer than the body. Often times they are called cave or cellar crickets as they prefer dark moist places.
Ground crickets are also common to pastures, meadows and wooded areas throughout Texas. They look like the house crickets, but are much smaller, usually less than ½ inch long. They are seldom pest, but may be abundant in and around houses after fall harvest or hay cutting.
The mole cricket (Scaperiscus vicinus), is named because of its resemblance to moles, both in appearance and burrowing habits. The front legs are broad and shaped like the legs of a mole. Mole crickets feed on tender roots of plants, earthworms and other insect larvae. They fly and are attracted to lights. They are major pests of golf courses causing physical and aesthetical damage when they burrow below the ground surface.
Tree crickets are slender, pale green and usually 1 inch long or less. They live in trees and shrubs. Although most are not pests, some can damage fruit-bearing plants and ornamental plants by chewing holes in stems and branches.
Next time we will discuss IPM (Integrated Pest Management for cricket infestations. As always if you have any questions regarding crickets or any other house invading pest do not hesitate to contact First Response Pest Control at 214-864-0669