What Do Crickets Eat? Caring For Your Captive Cricket The Correct Way | Kidadl


What Do Crickets Eat? Caring For Your Captive Cricket The Correct Way

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Crickets are omnivores who feed on fruits, vegetables, and meat.

Crickets were previously classified as Gryllidae at the family level by authors such as Imms, but modern experts such as Otte now classify them as members of the superfamily Grylloidea. The term has also been used to describe less closely related taxa in the Ensifera suborder, such as king crickets and mole crickets.

Their bodies are mostly cylindrical in shape, with spherical heads and long antennae. A smooth, powerful pronotum can be found behind the skull. Females have a long, cylindrical ovipositor, and the abdomen ends in a pair of lengthy cerci. Legs with three-segmented tarsi are diagnostic, as are larger femora in the hind legs, which provide power for jumping, like in many Orthoptera. Some crickets chirp by rubbing sections of their front wings together, which have evolved into tough, leathery elytra. When not in use for flight, the hind wings are membranous and folded; however, many species are flightless. The bull cricket, Brachytrupes, are the largest members of the family, measuring up to two in (five cm) in length.

Crickets can be found all across the world, with the tropics having the most variety. They can be found in a variety of environments, including grassland, bushes, and woodlands, as well as marshes, beaches, and caverns. Although some species are quiet, crickets are mostly nocturnal and are best known for the loud, continuous chirping chorus of males trying to attract females. The tympana on the tibiae of the front legs help the singing species hear well.

Crickets frequently feature in literature as characters. They are maintained as pets in places ranging from China to Europe and are occasionally used in cricket fights. Crickets are good at converting their food into body mass, therefore they might be used to produce food. They are eaten by humans in Southeast Asia, where they are deep-fried and sold as snacks in marketplaces. Additionally, they're fed to carnivorous pets and animals in zoos. Crickets are used as omens in Brazilian folklore for a variety of occurrences. After reading all about what do crickets eat, do read about are crickets good luck and can crickets bite?

Are there any strictly carnivorous crickets?

When caged crickets are denied access to their natural diet, they eat a wide array of organic items to supplement their nutritional requirements. In addition to having large, powerful jaws, some species of crickets have been known to bite humans.

The diet of some species is entirely herbivorous, consisting exclusively of flowers, fruit, and leaves, but the diet of ground-dwelling species includes seedlings, grasses, leaf fragments, and young plant shoots. Several species are predators, consuming invertebrate eggs, larvae, and pupae, as well as molting insects, scale insects, and aphids, among other prey. Scavengers prey on rotting plant matter, seedlings, and fungi among other organic materials. Many species have flourished in captivity on a diet of pulverized commercial dry dog food coupled with lettuce and aphids, which has proven to be effective.

While the majority of crickets are omnivorous, meaning they will consume meat along with plants, the vast majority choose plant matter and other types of food that are not difficult to obtain. Some species, on the other hand, choose to have a primarily fully carnivorous diet. In most cases, carnivorous crickets are members of the Tettigoniidae family, which is also known as bush-crickets and isn't regarded as a true cricket species. Among other things, mole crickets belonging to the family Gryllotalpidae, sometimes known as genuine crickets, prefer meat over plants but will consume plant matter if it is essential. The majority of a carnivorous cricket's diet consists of insects such as ants, mites, stick insects, aphids, and ladybugs, among others.

What do wild crickets find to eat in our homes?

Because most species either kill for their food or eat plants right in front of them, you usually don't think of crickets as food thieves when you think of insects. A particular kind of cricket, on the other hand, has a penchant for stealing food.

A common food source for crickets that make their way into a house is leftover food. Other food sources include leftover meals such as veggies and cat food, as well as flowers and leaves. Some crickets are also known to chew on wooden things, which is a rare occurrence. It has been seen by Animal Planet that crickets hang around in ant colonies, approach the insects, and do some hip-hop dancing movements in their company, among other things. Even though it is unclear why, the ants' movements cause them to drop food, which the cricket readily accepts.

What do different species of crickets eat?

There are about 900 different species of cricket on the planet. There are over 100 different species of cricket in the United States. They all eat a diverse diet. Let's have a look at what the various cricket species eat.

Camel crickets - This type of cricket lacks wings. The majority of them are under an inch in length. The insects resemble grasshoppers in appearance. They are classified as a group because they have mouth features that are similar to camels. These crickets, sometimes known as cave crickets, prefer wet and chilly environments. Camel crickets have a diverse diet. These insects will consume almost anything. They eat fungus that thrives in moist areas. Camel crickets may eat the carpet, drapes, furniture fabric, and clothes within the house. Insects are also capable of cannibalism, and they can eat other crickets.

Field crickets - They are most likely the crickets you hear chirping outside throughout the summer. These can be found in a variety of places, including forests, laws, and caverns. They can be seen in thick grass as well. They spend the majority of their time outside the house, although during wet and chilly seasons, they can come inside. This cricket is approximately an inch long. Field crickets eat a wide variety of foods. Plants, dead vegetables, and fungi are their main sources of food. If vegetables and fruits are available, insects will eat them. A field cricket will devour insects, dead or alive if food is short. This breed of cricket is environmentally friendly. They devour pest pupae and several eggs, preventing crop devastation.

House crickets - The hue of house crickets are yellowish-brown. These insects consume in the same way that a field cricket does. These crickets are commonly used as bait by anglers. Mice, lizards, and iguanas are among the home pets fed with them. Crickets are more commonly found near the river or along the shorelines. The majority of life near rivers is discarded by fishermen at the conclusion of the fishing season when they are no longer required. House crickets, in comparison to camel crickets, cause less damage inside a home. They primarily consume paper, food, and clothing.

Weta crickets - They are one of the few canorous cricket species. The majority of these insects may be found in Africa and New Zealand. Earthworms, beetles, and other insects make up the majority of the diet. They are one of the earliest cricket species, dating back to the time of the dinosaurs.

White-kneed crickets - A white-kneed is generally found in locations with a lot of rain. The white stripes on the knees give them their name. Crickets are nocturnal creatures that spend their days buried deep in the soil. Crickets are omnivorous, eating a wide range of plants and insects. Leaves, nuts, and fruits are among the foods consumed by these insects. Furthermore, they may eat decaying things such as dead insects and rotting plants.

Giant crickets - North of Malta, Sicily, Sardinia, and parts of North Africa are home to giant crickets. They have a large head, armored legs, and strong jaws. The insects' armored legs allow them to burrow into the soil, where they spend the majority of their time. Cricket has evolved to eat a wide variety of foods. They're opportunistic omnivores who eat plants and investigate them. The crickets feed on the plant's underground parts, such as roots and tubers.

Common Foods That Crickets Eat

The following are the most common foods consumed by crickets:


Crickets consume a variety of fresh fruits. Oranges, bananas, and apples are among their favorite fresh fruits. Fruit plant seeds are also enjoyed by insects. This pest is capable of devouring all of the seeds you've put in your garden. Some cricket species, such as field crickets, can cause significant harm to a range of plants. They do, however, keep weeds like ragweed and crabgrass at bay.


Crickets eat a lot of raw vegetables and roots as well. Carrot peels and tops are suitable for them. Crickets enjoy lettuce and cabbage as well. Furthermore, insects adore carrots and potatoes. The vegetables are high in various nutrients that are necessary for cricket growth. They can eat fresh vegetables or leftovers that have been tossed in the trash.


Crickets, unlike herbivorous grasshoppers, require protein in their diet to survive. That's why, in order to meet their nutritional needs, they devour other insects. To achieve their nutritional needs, some crickets may even devour other bugs. If crickets do not consume meat, they will perish. Crickets devour other insects to meet their protein requirements. Ants, aphids, stick insects, and ladybugs are among the insects they devour. A cricket also consumes meat roast and lean hamburgers. Iron is abundant in the meal, which is an important nutrient for crickets. They also eat chicken scraps from the breasts or drumsticks to meet their meat needs.

Cat food

Crickets eat cat food, which is one of their favorite foods. People who keep crickets as pets use a hammer to smash cat food into small bits, which they then feed to the insects.

Jerusalem Crickets (Stenopelmatus cahuilaensis)

Where do crickets get the required nutrients?

It is critical to feed crickets a high-quality diet whether you maintain them as feeder crickets for your reptile or as pets. If your crickets are feeder crickets, a good diet will also assist to feed your reptile the nutrition it needs.

Crickets are omnivorous, meaning they feed on everything. This indicates that a natural cricket diet includes protein, grains, and produce, as well as plants and meat. A cricket eats a variety of things in the wild, including insect larvae, aphids, flowers, seeds, leaves, raw fruit, and grass. If your feeder crickets are healthy, they will provide the most nutrient-dense food for your reptile. In captivity, their diet should feed them the same nutrition as they would in the wild.

If you keep crickets as a food source for another pet, such as a gecko, snake, or bearded dragon, keep in mind that whatever you feed your crickets will also feed your pet when gut loading. "Gut loading" refers to the practice of providing nutritious food to prey insects. You can choose from a range of nutritious items to feed your crickets, including apples, bananas, oranges, carrots, leafy greens, potatoes, squash, alfalfa, wheat germ, and rice cereal. Tropical fish flakes, chicken scraps, dry cat food, dry dog food, and reptile food are some of the other packaged pet foods available. If you're only gut loading your bugs fruits like apples and bananas, veggies like potatoes, and grains and no supplemental cat food, you need to feed them a nutritional supplement to make up for any nutritional shortfalls. The gut loading of the cricket can be supplemented with a reptile nutritional supplement.

Here's how you can feed your crickets. Make sure your crickets have access to food and clean water on a regular basis. Crickets will manage their food intake on their own. There's no need to weigh or measure specific amounts of food. Make sure your crickets have sufficient food and water by checking at least every two days. In the cage, you can put whole veggies and fruits. Shallow dishes or lids can also be used to serve dried pet meals and grains.

Will crickets eat each other?

Mormon crickets, which are actually shield-backed katydids rather than true crickets, are generally laid-back critters who seek food on their own. Although the insects are unable to fly, they may walk or hop. Occasionally, though, many million insects congregate and create a broad column that can stretch up to 6.2 mi (10 km) in length. After that, the column travels at a rate of approximately 1.24 mi (2 km) every day.

Scientists believe the marching crickets are on the lookout for protein-rich food, as they lunge and push to feed on it. Also, it turns out that the bodies of Mormon crickets are high in salt and protein, making them appetizing food for one another. Crickets that didn't move as swiftly as others or were dead already are eaten by other crickets, according to the researchers.

Caring For Your Pet Cricket

The following are some crucial things to remember when keeping your pet crickets healthy:

Give crickets a hiding place - crickets, like us, value their solitude! In your cricket box, insert egg flats, paper towel tubes, and other cardboard items to give them places to hide.

Use a high-protein food source - crickets are fed a high-protein diet on the farm to help them thrive. Crushed dog food or plain cornmeal can be used at home to sustain growth and guarantee that your crickets are ready to eat.

Provide plenty of water - If you've ever had a nasty cricket box, you know that it's usually due to dirty water. Providing fresh, clean water to your crickets will reduce odors and promote a healthy development environment.

Keep your cricket box clean -  When moving to a new batch of crickets, make sure to properly clean their box so that your new batch doesn't inherit any problems from the prior batch, even if they aren't visible.

Maintain the correct temperature - The temperature of your cricket enclosure should be kept around 70-90oF (21.1-32.2oC) depending on the size of your crickets.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for what do crickets eat then why not take a look at why do crickets chirp, or cricket facts.

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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