Meet the Field Cricket
The field cricket, Gryllusspp. Is one of three common crickets that can end up in structures (.It’s normal home is outside in warm, moist areas of lawns, roadsides, or in dense vegetation, mulch, or in stacks of wood, stones, or debris. It feeds on a variety of items including vegetables, fruits, dying insects, and garbage, outbreaks can damage field crops.
Colour is usually black with brown wings but can range to brownish-yellow. Head is a shiny black. The field cricket has a robust body, 13-30 mm long, with large hind legs used for jumping. Antennae are longer than the body and there is a pair of long cerci at the rear end. The female has a long ovipositor at the tip of the abdomen between the cerci. Nymphs are smaller versions without wings.
The Field Cricket as a Structural Pest
Field crickets usually become household nuisance pests in late summer when their numbers have increased outside and their food sources are disappearing. They also tend to move indoors during periods of drought or heavy rain. If they find their way indoors, they can end up in dark, damp areas in lower levels, in boxes or stacks of papers or fabrics, in firewood, or near garbage.
Indoors, field crickets will feed on food crumbs, dry pet food, and garbage. Field crickets are sometimes responsible for gnawing damage or fecal staining papers, books, wallpaper, and soiled fabrics, leather, furs, and rubber. This type of damage is rare unless numbers are high.
The male’s chirping sound both day and night can be extremely annoying. Unlike the house cricket, the field cricket doesn’t do well in indoor conditions and usually dies by winter.
These crickets are attracted to lights and can fly so reducing outside lighting, especially around doorways, is important in keeping them away from structures. Keep crickets out of structures with pest-proofing around doorways, basement windows, foundation vents, and openings where plumbing and wiring enter. Outside, remove weeds, heavy mulch, and stacks of materials around the foundation, and improve garbage handling. Perimeter treatments, including granular insecticides, can be used to reduce high outdoor populations around foundations. Indoor insecticide use is usually not necessary.
Key Points to Remember- Field crickets are common outdoor pests in areas that have lots of stacked materials or are overgrown with vegetation. They are also pests around garbage cans, dumpsters, and in dumps. When they get inside, they don’t survive long.