Photo of the Day

Fall Field Cricket
The calls of Fall Field Crickets, a series of chirps one might attempt to replicate by quickly strumming three to five teeth on a hair comb, are a familiar chorus during the late summer and autumn in the Lower Susquehanna River Watershed.  The song’s speed changes with temperature, becoming noticeably slower as cold weather sets in.  These crickets sing throughout the majority of the day and night, becoming quietest during the chilly hours of dawn.  Adults hide in burrows and beneath logs, leaf litter, and other organic debris.  Around human habitation, they seek shelter under hundreds of different objects, frequently finding their way into buildings where they do no real harm.  Crickets are eaten by almost every predator that exceeds them in size and are especially important as a protein-rich food source for birds feeding their young and preparing for autumn migration.  The Fall Field Cricket (Gryllus pennsylvanicus) is nearly identical in appearance to the less common Spring Field Cricket (Gryllus veletis), which calls during the spring and early summer in the Susquehanna valley.  The primary difference between the two species?  The former overwinter as eggs while the latter pass the colder months as nymphs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *