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SPRICKET = CAMEL CRICKET

By Chris Williams on November 10, 2017.

What is a “spricket?” We have these weird, creepy insects in our basement laundry room. When you open the door, they jump all over the place, straight up. My friend said they were sprickets. W. H., Hudson, NH

Spricket is another name for the camel cricket. You can probably guess how it got this name that combines “spider” with “cricket.” People misidentify these crickets as jumping spiders because their very long legs, long antennae and humped back give the initial impression of a large spider. The camel cricket is a mottled light and dark brown in color and ranges from ½ to 1-1/4 inches, although its long legs make it appear bigger.

The more common name for this insect is camel cricket, again because of the humped-up back. It’s related to the dark, and more familiar, field cricket that also occasionally gets into homes in the fall. One of the main differences in habits between the two is that the camel cricket is blessedly silent – no chirping! It is also wingless – no flying.

LIKE A ROOM FULL OF CRICKETS ON POGO STICKS!

Despite these attributes, the most negative feature of the camel cricket is its random, crazy jumping that freaks people out. When disturbed, these crickets seem to jump at the person but with no evil intent. They’ve been described as crickets on pogo sticks. They don’t bite or do any real damage, although they sometimes damage papers or fabrics.

Camel crickets are common outdoors in sheds, garages, or woodpiles, where they scavenge on a variety of foods. They are often not noticed until fall when they find their way indoors. Inside, they are found in cool, dark, damp areas in basements or crawlspaces, or in bathrooms or laundry rooms. They don’t usually survive long indoors, especially as their environment gets drier with winter heating.

If sprickets are driving you nuts, give Colonial Pest a call. Ask about our Preventative Maintenance Program designed to keep outside pests out. For more, see The Annual Return of the Camel Cricket and How to Keep Crickets Out of Your House.

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