Pet Crickets and Cricket Facts

All About Crickets


Have you ever considered having a chirping cricket as a house pet? Here are some facts and tips for creating a happy atmosphere for a pet cricket in your home.

Cricket Facts

  • A field cricket is shiny black, with brown wings. Despite Disney’s Jiminy Cricket, there is no such thing as a green cricket.
  • A fully-grown male is less than an inch long, while the female cricket is about 50 percent longer.
  • Only male crickets can sing.
  • Crickets, unlike grasshoppers, are short and stubby, and won’t jump, except in desperation.
  • Female crickets lay their eggs in the fall. When they hatch in May or early June there are thousands of tiny black crickets, but by July they are bigger and large enough to start singing.
  • To sing, male crickets lift their wing casings at a 45 degree angle and rub them together.
  • Crickets can eat and sing at the same time.
  • Like all insects, crickets are cold-blooded and they sing faster or slower depending on the temperature.

Did you know? To convert cricket chirps to degrees Fahrenheit, count number of chirps in 14 seconds then add 40 to get temperature.

Example: 30 chirps + 40 = 70° F

Find out more about using cricket chirps to predict temperature.

Pet Crickets

  • A medium sized pickle jar with small holes punched in the lid makes a wonderful cricket home. A fishbowl or terrarium covered with wire mesh can also do the trick.
  • Add sand or clean soil and leaves to the bottom of the jar. A piece of bark can also create a comfortable atmosphere for your cricket.
  • The best place to catch a cricket is inside your house. In the fall, crickets come inside, attracted by the warmth.
  • Once you catch your cricket, wrap him loosely in a handkerchief and transfer him into his jar. A newly caught cricket will make a desperate attempt to escape, so a glass enclosed shower stall would be ideal for the transfer.
  • The cricket will need food and water every day.
  • For water, use the lid of a plastic medicine jar. It can be put in with tweezers or a bacon turner. You can fill the water dish by drawing water through a straw.
  • Crickets will eat almost anything including cornflakes, oats, granola, birdseed, lettuce, or other raw vegetables.
  • Clean the jar every two to three days.

The sad part is, a cricket’s life is very short. Typically, if you catch one in good condition in August or September, he should last till about Thanksgiving. When the time comes, bring the jar outside, say your goodbyes, wash and clean it out, and put it away for next fall.


Reader Comments

Leave a Comment

I have captured many crickets

I have captured many crickets before, but I thought when I caught them they where all grasshoppers. Until my mom said its a cricket. So I've been keeping them In a empty water bottle. And when I took em out there legs where gone.? I'm confused where they fighting? Where they not in good condition because I treated them like grasshoppers. I put leaves in there? Are they like there cousin the grasshopper. Or do they eat differently?

Grasshoppers eat plant

Grasshoppers eat plant materials (herbivorous). Depending on the cricket species, they might be carnivorous (preying on other insects etc.), herbivorous, or omnivorous (eating both animal and plant substances). Some are scavengers.

Even if they are not normally carnivorous, some crickets prey upon each other if there is not enough food of the right kind--that could be what happened with yours. To provide protein, which many of them like, you can get commercial cricket food at a pet store, or provide them with dry dog or cat food. Also give them a mix of vegetable scraps (bits of lettuce, carrot, potato, etc.), and fruit such as apple slices. Avoid overcrowding--they must be able to move about easily. Make sure that the water bottle is large enough, and that it has adequate ventilation. They must have water as well--such as via a damp sponge. Keep in a dry, warm area (70-80F), and clean their habitat regularly. Remove any crickets that have died as soon as possible. Good luck!

What about chinese

What about chinese crickets?

do they live longer? i just got some crickets, but i was wondering if there are any crickets that live a year or two

Most crickets could live for

Most crickets could live for a year or more with the right conditions, however, they usually can't survive more than one winter. chirps is a chirps is a nature's thermometer but how exactly to clean up the jar without the cricket escaping?

good question

good question

Free Beginners Garden Guide

Vegetable Gardening for Beginners!
Your complete guide on how to grow a vegetable garden—from scratch!


You will also be subscribed to our Almanac Companion Newsletter