At first I thought this cricket in the basement was sort of charming and good luck, though it doesn’t seem to chirp. But it jumps much higher than the black ones and seems to be multiplying! It’s freaking me out. I don’t want it jumping upstairs.
Camel crickets are brown and have a hump, thus the name. They have extremely long antenna and legs, with “thighs” as long as their bodies and tibias even longer. Found outdoors originally, when they get indoors they prefer dark, moist environments, such as basements or crawl spaces.
They are relatively harmless and spiders eat them. To control them, fix any leaks, dehumidify, declutter to improve air circulation, and use sticky roach traps. Outside, dry up and clean up around the foundation. Tighten up any openings around doors, windows, vents or utility entries.
With bird populations plummeting, I want to give gifts this year to help birds. Any holiday gift ideas besides bird feeders and bird baths?
A major problem is birds hitting windows. They may not die immediately, but fly away and die from injuries. Window decals that can be removed for window cleaning are easy to use and effective. Many are translucent and barely noticeable from indoors.
Of course, seed- or berry-producing native plants make a good gift. Any native plant can support insects, too, which all birds feed upon at some point in their life cycle. A small outdoor water heater can keep a water source unfrozen and available to birds throughout the winter.
University of Maryland Extension’s Home and Garden Information Center offers free gardening and pest information at extension.umd.edu/hgic. Click “Ask Maryland’s Gardening Experts” to send questions and photos.