Adult Jerusalem crickets are extremely large insects and may grow as to 2 inches in length.
These crickets are light brown in color and shiny. They have strong legs, enormous heads and strong mandibles. Their abdomen has black bands across the top segments.
Jerusalem crickets have huge, strong mandibles, which they use for digging. Their jaw strength allows them to burrow under rocks or bury themselves in holes in the soil. These are wingless, nocturnal insects. Due to their large size and active movement they cause fear among people who stumble upon them. They can be aggressive and are capable of inflicting a painful bite. Jerusalem crickets are often found beneath dead wood or other solid objects laying on the ground.
Jerusalem crickets are primarily predatory; eating other insects, but will also feed on vegetables and root crops.
Male and female Jerusalem crickets drum their abdomens against the bottom of their burrows or the ground to attract one another. Small clusters of their relatively large eggs are laid by the female in soil pockets. Their complete life cycle may extend three years or more. Females are known to kill and eat males following copulation.
The Jerusalem cricket spends most of its life underground and aerates the soil by nibbling on roots, tubers, and decomposing organic matter.
When treating a cricket infestation, it is important to treat not only around the home, but also other harborages, such as piles of debris, plants and shrubs, and around pools and fencelines.