A spider cricket also goes by other names. It is called a cave cricket or camel cricket. It has a hunched back, long legs, and a light brown round body with dark-brown markings. Although called a cricket, a spider cricket remains quiet. It does not make the usual persistent chirping sounds that a regular cricket makes.
Where Can You Find Cave Crickets?
Cave crickets look for places that are dark and humid (like caves) where they can hide, live and breed. They can move into your house and make their home on your porch, shed, or anywhere damp and dark.
Mold and fungus usually thrive in places which are dark and damp. Cave crickets feed on mold and fungus and are thus likely to choose areas where such food is plentiful.
Cave crickets can nest in the ground and feed on dead bugs, moss, algae, and other similar forms of vegetation. Once they have established their nests on your property, they are likely to seek shelter inside your home to escape the summer heat. They can settle into crawl spaces inside your house or in your basement. They can hang out in your toilet, shower, sink, or washing machine, enjoying the dark and damp surroundings.
Reasons Why You Do Not Want Spider Crickets Around You
Spider crickets tend to leave their mark all over your home, especially on the walls. Finding their “frass,” or their dark, unattractive droppings smeared around your home can be a nasty experience.
Mice and rats feed on spider crickets. The presence of these insects inside your home is likely to attract rats and mice, as well.
Spider crickets love to feed on fabric and other similar material. They may cause serious damage to your clothes, area rugs, drapery, linen, books, furniture, boxes, and carpets.
Spider crickets neither sting nor bite. However, they look rather scary and are quite aggressive. They can suddenly and randomly leap out of their hiding places and startle you.
These insects reproduce very quickly. If you don’t know that you have them, they can multiply rather swiftly and become more difficult to exterminate. If the population becomes too big, some of the spider crickets may leave the crawl spaces and migrate into the living areas in your home.
Steps to Take to Eliminate the Creepy Creatures from Your Home
- Let there be light.
Cave crickets like to stay in dark, dank, and gloomy areas. Light tends to irritate them, make them uncomfortable, and drive them away.
- Use a humidifier.
Drying out a damp area is likely to make it difficult for crickets to survive. Use a humidifier to dry out cricket-infested areas and you will soon see less of the pests. Pay special attention to your garage and basement. If you have the means, waterproof your basement.
- Make sure to seal off all possible entry points.
Spider crickets can enter your house from the outside and make their home with you. You can prevent this by sealing off tiny crevices and cracks on the walls by which they come in. Fit your doors with draft excluders. Use window screens that fit snugly.
- Use home-made pesticides and repellents.
You can concoct your own pesticide by simply dissolving the detergent in water. Soapy water is a cheap DIY way to deal with spider crickets. The mixture causes irritation. Fill up a spray bottle and spray away in cricket-ridden areas. When you do this every so often, you will hopefully drive out the crickets.
You can steep red chili powder in boiling or hot water and use the brew as an insect repellent.
You can use cedar oil to get rid of crickets. When the crickets get in contact with the oil, they go through osmotic dehydration and die.
You can also use Neem oil. The compounds in this particular oil destabilize the insects’ hormonal system. They affect the insects’ ability to eat, mate, and lay eggs.
Peppermint oil is an effective pesticide. Just take a few drops of peppermint oil and blend with white vinegar for a strong cricket repellent.
Boric acid is widely recognized for its industrial applications. Few know that it also makes for a first-rate insecticide for crickets, beetles, and cockroaches. You can use the acid in its pure powder form or dissolve it in water, and use as a spray insecticide.
Eucalyptus oil is another essential oil you can use to get rid of spider crickets. It is safe to use and has a lovely smell to boot.
Citronella is powerful as an insect repellent. You can buy citronella scented torches and candles. You can use water and citronella essence as a spray treatment. You can also plant the herb in strategic areas in your garden to stop the crickets from invading your property.
- Vacuum the pests away.
You can use a vacuum cleaner to suck up and get rid of spider crickets. You will also be able to suck-up newly laid eggs and contain the population.
- Grow nitrogen-fixing plants.
Clover, sweet peas, garlic, and other similar nitrogen-fixing plants annoy crickets and help to get rid of the pests. Include these plants in your home garden as an effective measure to prevent or control cricket infestation.
- Use molasses as a trap.
Crickets love the smell of molasses. You can put some molasses in a big jar or a wide-rimmed bowl to attract the pests. The spider crickets will be drawn by the scent, jump right inside the jar, and get stuck.
- Keep a clean house.
Spider crickets, like many other pests, are drawn to dirty, littered, and untidy areas. Clear up your clutter. Keep your home spick-and-span if you want to avoid pest infestation.
Trim your bushes and clear unnecessary long grasses so you do not attract the insects into your property.
- Use diatomaceous earth.
Diatomaceous earth is an effective solution for eliminating spider crickets from your home. Referred to as DE, the fine, talc-like, and off-white powder consists of finely crumbled remains of fossilized marine phytoplankton.
The microscopic particles are extremely sharp. They stick between the insect’s exoskeleton joints, cut through the waxy outer layer, and allow the moisture to seep out – thereby completely dehydrating and killing the insects.
- Consult the experts.
Get in touch with a reliable pest control expert to help you safely and effectively get rid of the insects and prevent them from coming back.
You do not want to find a spider cricket – let alone a host of them inside your house. Take the steps outlined above to help you eliminate the pesky crickets and keep them out of your home.