Common Cricket, or Hearth-cricket,Gryllus domesticus, L. an insect which delights in new-built houses, where the moisture and softness of the mortar enable it to penetrate between the joints of the bricks or stones, and thus to open communications to different rooms.
Crickets have a great partiality for kitchens and bakers ovens, oft account of the continual warmth to be found in those places. They are known by their lively, chirping notes, performed by a sudden friction of their wings, or by striking them against their hind-legs : this noise, however, is peculiar to the males, and increases towards night, when they leave their secret haunts-. The female deposits her yellowish eggs in the earth, or rubbish, whence the insects emerge in twelve days, and attain their full growth in six or eight weeks, after having four times changed their coats. Towards the latter end of the summer, they are observed to fly ; a circumstance which accounts for their suddenly retreating from one place, and appearing at another.
An easy method of destroying this insect, is to place phials, halt* full of beer, or any other liquid, near their boles, whence they will crawl into them, and cannot escape. Cats are very fond of crickets ; but the vast quantities they consume, often occasion their death. Hence it is more advisable to destroy these insects, either by pouring hot water into the holes through which they retreat, or exposing boiled peas, or carrots, mashed up with quicksilver, in places which they frequent. Another mode of exterminating them, consists in placing pea-straw near their habitations, and then immersing them into water, together "with this straw, to which they are peculiarly attached.