Public Health Vectors and Pests

House Cricket

 
Common Name House Cricket

Scientific Name Acheta domesticus
Size 16 to 21 mm long
Colour light yellowish-brown
Description
  • An adult is about three-fourths inch (19 mm) long with three dark bands on the head with long thin antennae.
  • The body is light yellowish brown. House Crickets remain hidden during the day and become active at night. They feed on almost any food found around the home.
Habitat
  • Usually found in warm areas where they can get enough moisture and food.
  • In the winter they are often found near fireplaces, kitchens, water heaters and furnace areas
Lifecycle
  • Each female can lay an average of 728 eggs with the immature (nymphs) resembling the adults except being wingless.
  • Nymphs molt seven to eight times and reach adulthood in about 60 days.
  • Also, these crickets can live indoors, completing their life cycle with eggs laid in cracks, crevices and other dark areas such as behind baseboards
Type of damage
  • Damage plant seedlings, seeds of grain crops, alfalfa, strawberries, tomatoes and other vegetable crops.
  • Damage stored tubers or fruits. In hay meadows, crickets can chew through bale twine
  • Chew on clothing, draperies or furniture upholstery. They particularly like fabrics containing organic materials such as cotton, silk and wool
Sources / breeding Many begin cultures in late spring as temperatures must be 80 to 90F for breeding.
Prevention
  • Reduce hiding places around the perimeter of homes and buildings to discourage build up of cricket populations.
  • Removal of dense vegetation, loose bricks, boards, wood piles and other debris minimizes hiding places.
  • Deny entry to crickets in homes by sealing cracks and gaps around the foundation, loose-fitting doorways and hose/wire entrance points (e.g., electrical, air conditioner, cable etc.).
  • Seal entry points either by caulking cracks and crevices, or by using weather stripping for tighter-fitting garage and other entry doors.
Control
  • Insecticides registered for cricket control are available in various formulations such as aerosols, baits, dusts, granules, emusifiable concentrates (EC), soluble concentrates (SC) and wettable powders (WP).
  • Insecticide products available locally may contain active ingredients as follows: bifenthrin, cyfluthrin, cypermethrin, deltamethrin, esfenvalerate, permethrin and pyrethrins. Insecticide aerosols are very useful to kill one or a few crickets, but they may not be as effective as more general, residual insecticides

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