Crickets are common in the warm and moist climate of Tennessee and Southern Kentucky. They are flying and jumping insects that vary in size among species. Some grow up to 2 inches long. The typical house cricket is yellowish brown in color, has 6 legs and a long antenna. The hind legs are designed for jumping. The male makes a chirping sound that serves to alarm or attract a mate and varies directly in frequency with the temperature. It is caused by the grinding of the front wings and sounds different among species. While the house cricket produces a loud and continuous noise during the night, the field cricket’s chirp is not as high-pitched and produces the sound at night and during the day. One exception is the camel cricket that does not chirp at all. The lifespan of a cricket lays only between 6 and 8 weeks. Even though they are nocturnal, crickets are attracted to electrical light. Crickets seek out damp and moist environments. If crickets enter the home, they are not only a nuisance because of their sound, but also because of their eating habits. While crickets feed on plants and other insects outside, they feed on fabric inside. Using seeds and crops as a food source is a major problem for agriculture. The life cycle consists of the egg, nymph and adult stage.
House crickets grow between 16 and 22 mm long. Their color is yellow brown and the body is characterized by three dark bands. Compared to house crickets, field crickets are much bigger, they can grow 2.5cm long and are black or brown colored. Compared to most species, ground crickets are significantly smaller. While some types have no wings, usually they cover about half of the cricket’s body. The antenna’s length equals about half the head and body length. Females carry a tubular organ, the ovipositor, in the back of their body through which eggs are being deposited. Both males and females exhibit cerci, which is a pair of appendages in the rear of the body. Wings are underdeveloped in young crickets that have not reached maturity yet.