Cricket Facts!

Cricket Facts!

Cricket
Cricket by Gemma Stiles cc2.0

There are more than 900 species of crickets in the world. They are found in many colors, including black, brown, green and white. Crickets do have wings, but only a few species fly — they’re generally leaping insects. They are similar in body structure to grasshoppers and sometimes the two are confused, because they both have hind legs built for jumping. Usually just the males make the familiar chirping sound, but ocassionally the females do, too. This is done by rubbing a sharp ridge of one wing along a series of wrinkles on the other wing.

Spiracle valves cricket
Scanning electron micrograph of a cricket spiracle valve. Image credit: Chsh CC BY-SA 2.5

Like other insects, crickets do not have lungs, and they don’t breathe through their mouths or nostrils the way we do. Instead, they take in oxygen through a series of holes in the sides of their bodies, called spiracles.





 

Cricket diet_Crickets_feeding_on_carrot
Two house crickets (Acheta domestica)
in captivity feeding on a piece of carrot. Image credit: Sean Wallace CC BY-SA 3.0

Crickets are omnivorous. They feed on dead insects, decaying matter, fungi and young plants. They even prey on weak or crippled crickets, or eat their own dead when other food is unavailable. Crickets are prey to birds, rodents, reptiles and other insects.

Crickets as food_Chingrit_thot
Deep-fried Acheta domesticus at a market in Thailand. Image credit: Takeaway cc3.0

In some countries, various cricket species are consumed as food. For example, in Thailand and Vietnam, crickets are a very common snack. The cricket is first soaked and cleaned and then deep fried in oil. In the US, there is even a candy store that sells cricket lollipops!

Crickets are often kept as live food for carnivorous pets like frogs, salamanders and spiders. These crickets are fed very nutritious food so that the nutrition will be passed on to the pet that eats them (called gut loading). Also, they are dusted with a mineral supplement powder to ensure that the pet gets maximum nutrition.

Crickets are featured in the following book:
25 Nocturnal Animals




The YouTube video playlist below contains videos about Crickets. Details of the videos featured are underneath.

The Playlist:

  1. Small World of Insects – Cricket by smallworldofinsects
  2. Cricket shedding exoskeleton by andres merizalde
  3. Cricket Breeding – The whole life cycle of crickets by BeardedDragonsInfo
  4. cricket chirping night insect sound by ebrahim bayan

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