Whether you’re raising crickets to feed your pets or you have them overrunning your yard, you need to track down their source of food to determine how to either get them booming in your enclosure or get them under control.
Crickets are omnivores and eat various things. Here, we break down everything that you need to know about their diet and answer a few other questions about these insects.
What Do Crickets Eat in the Wild?
Crickets are true omnivores, which means they eat plants, proteins, and grains. In the wild, they chow down on insect larvae, aphids, flowers, seeds, fruit, vegetables, grasses, and just about anything else that won’t eat them.
They’re not overly picky, which means you can find them in your garden or out in the forest—wherever they can find food, they can thrive.
What Do You Feed Farm Crickets?
While you can feed your farm crickets something as simple as fish food and keep them alive, it’s best to gut load them before feeding them to your pet(s). What the crickets eat will affect the overall health of your pet too.
Also, by keeping the crickets healthy, they’ll reproduce for you, and you’ll have a never-ending supply of crickets! Some of the best foods to gut load your crickets with are potatoes, carrots, apples, alfalfa, wheat germ, and even prepacked cricket food.
Finally, keep in mind that you need a full enclosure for crickets to breed because they lay eggs under the soil, which means a clear plastic case won’t do the trick.
How Long Do Crickets Live?
The average cricket only lives 8 to 10 weeks, even when you’re meeting all their needs in captivity. The good news is that if you’re giving them everything that they need and they have an adequate enclosure, they’ll keep laying eggs, and you’ll have an endless supply of crickets.
But this is a double-edged sword. If you don’t have enough crickets, you’ll deplete your supply, but if you have too many, they’ll overrun your enclosure faster than your pet can eat them.
While we’d love to recommend a good number to keep them in check, it all depends on what animal you’re feeding them to and how many that animal can eat.
Just keep in mind that each female cricket can lay up to 100 eggs in her lifetime, which means that a dozen females can have up to 1,200 babies in just a few weeks.
Do Crickets Die in Winter?
Believe it or not, when the temperature drops, not a single cricket will be chirping outside. They all die in the winter, and it’s only the eggs that they laid before winter that bring them back in the spring!
If you’re raising crickets in captivity, you don’t have to worry about this. As long as you keep the temperature up, there’s no cold weather to wipe them out!
Whether you’re looking to raise crickets or eliminate them as pests, it all starts with their diet. Fortunately for those raising them, they’re not picky eaters, but this is a con if you’re trying to get rid of them.
Hopefully, this guide gave you a better idea of what to expect regarding crickets and what they eat. This way, you’re ready for whatever they throw at you!
Featured Image Credit: Richard Malo, Pixabay