Camelback Crickets can become a pest in and around the home. Most pests want to live where people live, but these crickets are different. They love dark, damp, cave-like settings where they can nest. These environments need to provide both water and food. Camelback crickets can live in a home for long periods of time without residents knowing. As their population increases, some will get into living areas. This will prompt the homeowner to treat. Before we discuss methods of camelback cricket control, its important to understand some basic biology of this pest.
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CAMELBACK CRICKET BIOLOGY ^
Camelback crickets appear throughout most of the United States. They will move into areas around the home taking up residence under porches and sheds. They love moisture and darkness. Such areas produce fungus and mold – both of which can feed this species of cricket. In addition to mold and fungus, camelback crickets will feed on fabric. This becomes a problem in the home since migrating crickets can cause substantial damage if left unchecked.
Once crickets are established around the home, they’ll readily move inside for shelter from the hot summer heat. Crawl spaces and basements provide excellent nest sights. If you’re finding some in your basement, treat sooner rather than later. Its far easier to get control of this cricket before its established.
If you have a home with a crawl space, its important to check it periodically. Such inspections may reveal pest problems. And if you find crickets during any inspection, try to treat right away. Since camelback crickets reproduce quickly, its wise to get rid of them before populations swell.
Once their population gets large, they’ll migrate up and out of crawl spaces and into living areas of the home. This is disconcerting to residents since this cricket is very different compared to its cousin the common field cricket. Camelback crickets have long antennae, huge hind legs and a strong looking body.
Since camelback crickets grow large, many people are surprised at how big they can get. Another unique feature of this cricket is that they jump randomly and are more likely to jump at you than away from you. Its believed this is due to how they see. Their vision is such that it appears to them they are moving away from a potential predator but in fact they are moving towards it. Some behavior will in fact spook some predators leading scientists to conclude its evolved this way for defensive purposes.
Another problem with letting camelback cricket populations going unchecked is the potential for fabric damage. They love to eat both synthetic and man made material including rugs, furniture, books, canvas, clothing, boxes, linen, drapery, and just about anything we have in our living area. This can lead to damage which looks like some type of moth.
Because camelback crickets are rather large and meaty, mice and rats are fond of them. Many times rats and mice will take advantage of populations which are active in the home. This could lead to rat and mouse infestations and in turn, require more even pest control! Because of problems associated with letting cave crickets live in the home, its wise to take action and stop local infestations.
CAMELBACK CRICKET TRAPS ^
If you think you have this cricket getting into living areas because you’ve seen droppings or damaged fabric, set out some GLUE TRAP MONITORS. They will readily attract crickets because they provide the type of shelter camelback crickets like. If you catch one every few months, there isn’t much of a problem. However, if you are catching one or more a week, it is time to start doing some cricket control.
Traps should be spaced 10-15 feet apart and will generally remain functional for 3 months.
BEST CAMELBACK CRICKET SPRAY ^
Camelback cricket control is usually easy to achieve. The key is attacking them where they want to live. Since they start from the outside, its recommended you control outside populations. The best way to do this is with concentrate we carry called BITHOR. This low odor material mixes with water and treatments will last 30+ days.
Simply spray foundation walls, around windows and doorways, under decks or sheds and in mulch or other dark, moist areas. Be sure to create at least a 5 foot band barrier both up and out from the home. So at least 5 feet up (higher if you have elevated decks since they love living under the decking) and at least 5 feet out into turf, pine straw, etc.
Any structure close to the home which may be harboring crickets should be treated thoroughly to. By controlling them outside, you’ll be stopping the migration that will naturally happen into the home. Expect to use at least 1-2 gallons of mixed spray every month till the problem is gone. Bithor combines two actives which work together in a special way. It will both kill quickly AND then provide a non-repellent killing action that can last over a month. This feature is important as it won’t spook or chase them around. The crickets won’t detect this active so they end up moving through it, picking up a lethal and dose and dying without having a chance to survive.
Add 1.5 oz per gallon for best results. If needed, you can even spray this in the home around baseboards where they might be entering. But for the crawl space (if you have one), read below.
Use a good PUMP SPRAYER to apply the Bithor. Our ultra light model is strong enough to last several years but easy to operate and maintain.
CAMELBACK CRICKET BAIT ^
For mild or light infestations where you have access to crawl spaces or basements with activity, you can try using NIBAN FG bait. This light granule is easy to apply and can be used safely in living areas as well as crawl spaces or basements. Crickets will readily feed on it and die. Apply it by lightly sprinkling some out behind furniture, along baseboards and basically where crickets are seen active. It comes packed in a bag that can be used to sprinkle out; apply 3 oz per 100 sq/ft.
For wall voids, a BAIT APPLICATOR will help. Since camelback crickets will readily nest in basement walls (they love the space behind sheet rock or paneling installed over the cement), this device will help deliver the Niban where it will be needed. It will also help for treating any crack or crevice, light fixture, behind switch plate covers or electric outlet covers and other hard to reach areas.
For crawl spaces, the DUSTIN MIZER can help get effective coverage. It will disperse the Niban up to 20 feet out. Its manually operated by turning a “crank” mechanism and can help get these hard to maneuver areas baited properly instead of ignored.
Treatments with Niban will last 1-3 months depending on the level of infestation. Severe populations will require more frequent treatments until the feeding crickets die off.
HOW TO TREAT FINISHED BASEMENTS FOR CAMELBACK CRICKETS ^
Finished basements can be the whole problem area with camelback crickets. Its not uncommon for them to nest behind the wall and from there, forage into the finished area. If that’s happening in your home, the Glue Traps and Bithor will help. But you will need to treat that wall space.
Use the Bait Applicator to apply the Niban behind wall voids, inside electric outlets and up into drop ceilings if you have these installed. These are all classic problem areas for finished basements. By direct baiting, you will be delivering food to where the crickets are living and reproducing.
Baiting these spaces will pay faster dividends by getting the bait to affect more cricket since most will not forage out into living spaces. When combined with outside treatments of Bithor, you’ll be able to control existing populations as well as keep new ones from coming back. For severe infestations or if you want quicker results, a more aggressive approach is suggested which will be to dust the wall void.
HOW TO DUST FOR CAMELBACK CRICKETS ^
Although baiting for crickets will work when populations are small and easy to locate, treating with dusts and sprays will yield faster, more thorough results.
For homeowners with infested crawl spaces and/or basements, this is no doubt the best treatment method. This is particularly true when infestations have found their way behind finished walls of basements. Although baiting will provide relief, it will many times this is not be enough to knock them all out.
So if you want complete and fast control, dust these spaces with DELTAMETHRIN DUST. iIt will work within 1-2 days, kill all stages developing behind the walls and in crawl spaces out of sight and overall, won’t miss any. Bait will only work on those which eat it. And if there is a good supply of food hidden away for these guys to live on, Niban alone may not be enough. But Deltamethrin Dust won’t miss.
Use 1 lb of dust for every 500 sq/ft of area. Just remember, you don’t want to apply Deltamethrin Dust where you apply Niban. Now you can dust crawl spaces and wall voids but for the living area, use nothing but Niban and Glue Boards. This would be a smart approach. But don’t bait the crawl space and then dust it; the dust will render the bait unattractive to the crickets.
For dusting wall voids, light fixtures, under switch plate covers, etc., use the CRUSADER HAND DUSTER.
Most finished basements have access to areas behind finished walls and from drop ceilings which enable easy treatment of these voids. If you have such access points, blow the Deltamethrin Dust into as many spaces like these you can reach
The other benefit of the dust is that one treatment will last 6-12 months providing the longest control. This is important if you have a lot of reproduction going on in the walls and if you prefer having to treat less frequently. If you have a crawl space in addition to the basement, make sure to treat it as well. Use the DUSTIN MIZER for those hard to access spaces; it can be used to disperse the dust as well as the Niban Bait.
Camelback crickets are a common problem around the home and yard. If left to live under decks or on the dark side of you home, some will get inside. Once inside, they’ll target crawl spaces or basements. Avoid inside problems by treating the outside with Bithor once a quarter. Once you have a problem, spray monthly until they’re gone. Now ifI they’re already inside, bait with Niban for small infestations and set up some traps. Heavily infested areas should be aggressively treated with Deltamethrin Dust for the quickest results and long lasting protection from future problems.
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