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Acheta domesticus

  • Live collection
Photo: Insectarium de Montréal, Laurent Desaulniers

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Description

Along with locusts and grasshoppers, crickets belong to the leaping insect family. They have short, strong hind legs. The antennae are long and slender. They have two sensory filaments, called cerci, at the tip of their abdomens. Females have a long egg-laying organ, called an ovipositor, between these two sensory organs. House crickets are over 13 mm long.

Theme

Reproduction pros

Sub-theme

Reproduction

Section

Crooners
French name
Grillon domestique
Scientific name
Acheta domesticus
English name
House cricket
Class
Insecta
Order
Orthoptera
Family
Gryllidae
Living environment

Diet

These insects are omnivorous. They eat mostly leaves, seeds, fruit, food and bakery scraps and dead or live insects.

Habitat

Although crickets can survive outdoors, they often get into our homes, especially in winter, when it is warmer indoors.

Geographic distribution

This species is found almost everywhere: in Canada, the United States, Asia, North Africa and Western Europe. Crickets are probably native to Southeast Asia.

Ecological role

Outdoors, crickets are eaten by other animals, like birds and frogs, helping to maintain a balance in their natural habitat.

Special behaviour

Crickets are singing insects. Only males are capable of singing, or stridulating, however. To do so, they rub the inside edges of their forewings together. They have a highly varied repertory of sounds, which they use to mark their territory and attract females.

The tympanum, used to perceive sounds, is located on the tibiae of the forelegs of both males and females.

Interesting facts

Status

This is a common, easily reared species.

Popular beliefs

Crickets are associated with luck and happiness in many countries. Some people in China and Japan carry them around in small boxes. In Brazil, they are thought to predict illness, money or hope.

Interesting facts and curiosities

Crickets are among the world’s most widely consumed insects, both as popular food and for survival.

Even today, in China, people organize cricket fights, betting on battles held in miniature rings.

At the Insectarium

Biogeographic zone = Palearctic

These insects are fed to other arthropods, in particular, the tarantulas and scorpions in the live collection.

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