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Cricket Facts: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Jennifer Lowery

Jennifer has taught elementary levels K-3 and has master's degrees in elementary education and curriculum/instruction and educational leadership.

Crickets are insects that can be found in most places, and some people think they bring luck. In this lesson, learn about their habitat, diet, predators, and special physical features and facts that make crickets unique.

If you live near a wooded area, chances are you have heard the chirping songs at night. This sound is from crickets, nocturnal insects with antennae and wings. They are often dark brown or black. The chirping sounds you hear comes from the male crickets, who rub their front legs together.

Many cultures think crickets bring good luck. In fact, some people even keep crickets as pets. Other people consider crickets to be delicious snacks. If you travel to many Asian countries, you might enjoy a deep fried cricket as a special treat!

Would you like to eat this for a snack? In many cultures, crickets are considered a tasty treat.
close up of cricket

Habitat and Diet

Crickets can be found in nearly every part of the world, except where temperatures remain extremely cold year round. Crickets live in grasses, trees, bushes and nearly anywhere else where they can hide from predators.

There are over 900 species of crickets. Some species of crickets are omnivorous, meaning they eat both plants and other animals. Others only eat plants or plant materials, such as fruit, seeds, and leaves.

Predators

Crickets do not have many defenses against predators, and many animals, like frogs, snakes and spiders, enjoy eating them. Crickets have strong back legs, and they can jump quickly and for distances that are quite far considering their small size. This is helpful when an enemy is closing in.

Crickets have large back legs that enable them to jump quickly.
Drawing of cricket insect

The coloring of crickets often varies with the environment in which they live. Dark green or brown crickets can easily blend into an environment where there is lots of grass or dirt. Desert crickets, on the other hand, are often a lighter brown in order to blend into the lighter soils.

While their coloring can camouflage them from enemies, this feature does not save them from parasites. A parasite is an animal that must feed off of another animal in order to survive. Unfortunately for crickets, there are many parasites, such as flies and mites, that consider them to be good hosts. Some crickets create burrows or holes in the ground. This can help them escape predators, but not parasites.

A common dark cricket can blend into the soil or go down into a burrowed tunnel to escape a predator.
common field cricket

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