What Are Camel Crickets?
These insects go by many names. If a friend or family member has taken a look at the crickets that are in your basement and they said that you have sprickets, cave crickets, camelback crickets, cave weta, or spider crickets, they're probably talking about camel crickets. And all of these names actually give some insight into what camel crickets look like and where they like to live.
You probably noticed the word spider. That is because camel crickets are often mistaken for spiders when they cling to dimly lit basement walls or are crawling around on a basement floor. Only, unlike spiders, these bugs can leap several feet--and they jump directly at you.
The word cave is often associated with camel crickets because that is where these crickets can usually be found in nature. They prefer locations that are shaded, cool, and moist.
These critters don't get their camel name from being able to go days without water. It comes from the observation that they have a rounded back that looks a little bit like the hump on a camel. They are also usually a tan and brown mix that resembles the coloration of camels--though not always.
They're not camels and they're not spiders, even though they share traits with these creatures. Camel crickets are crickets. That means you can expect them to do the same things other crickets do, like eat plants and chew on fabrics. There is, however, one trait they don't share with other crickets. Camel crickets don't chirp. But this isn't necessarily a good thing. They can be found grouped together on walls, sometimes in large numbers, silently waiting to give you a heart attack.
Why Are Camel Crickets In My House?
If you have a moist basement, that's all it takes, but you can have camel crickets come into your home for many reasons. Sometimes it is just to hide somewhere that is cooler or more shaded than the outside. Sometimes it is to find some bugs to eat. These insects also feed on fungus. If your home has moisture damage, fungus, or mold, these crickets will feel right at home.
How Do I Keep Camel Crickets Out Of My House?
Once camel crickets get in, they are extremely hard to get out because they can hide in wall voids and other spaces that are hard to get into. But, if these crickets haven't entered your home yet, these tips should help you keep them out.
Reduce shaded areas around your home. Moisture pests, like the camel cricket, love shaded locations. Not only does it provide protection from the drying effects of the sun, these areas tend to have more moisture in the soil. Keep bushes trimmed neatly and remove trees that create excessive shade to make the soil near your foundation walls resistant to moisture buildup.
Fix water issues. When spigots leak or gutters become obstructed, water can collect near your foundation walls. Not only is this bad for your home, it creates the conditions for camel crickets and other pests to come in close. And, when they come in close, they explore your walls for entry points to exploit.
Seal entry points. While it is not possible to find and seal all of the entry points that bugs can exploit, the more you seal, the harder it will be for bugs to enter. Many bugs will come into your home simply because they can.
Adding a fan or a dehumidifier in your basement can make it dry enough to resist moisture pests like the camel cricket.
At the end of the day, the best way to keep bugs and other critters out of your home is to have ongoing pest control services from a pest control company you trust. If you live in New York City or the surrounding area, we would love the opportunity to show you what life can be like when pests are properly managed. Reach out to Parkway Pest Services today.