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the elusive crickets of boise.

July 27, 2016

If you are in Boise, and awake after 9pm, you are likely hearing the sound of crickets. This sound can be pleasant at first, but after awhile, it can make summer nights truly maddening. I’ve got all my doors and windows closed, and I can still hear these infernal insects.

Most of you have probably never seen what these crickets of Boise look like. They are sneaky little buggers that stop chirping when people get close. They are really really hard to spot

In Modesto, California, where I used to live, there were cute little black crickets that stayed on the ground. There weren’t too many of them chirping at once. I liked those crickets. Here in Boise, the crickets are not the cute little black fellas. They look creepy. Also, there are LOTS of them. They infest bushes of various sizes.

I got fed up with not knowing what these crickets looked like, so I grabbed a flashlight and my ipod nano (it has a tiny camera built in), and pushed my way deep into a lilac bush in the backyard. I tried and tried, and finally got some footage of the crickets. This very short video was not easy to make. Took a lot of patience.

By the way, here’s some info I found on google about how crickets actually make noise: “The chirping sound is created by running the top of one wing along the teeth at the bottom of the other wing. As he does this, the cricket also holds the wings up and open, so that the wing membranes can act as acoustical sails. It is a popular myth that the cricket chirps by rubbing its legs together.”

The reason the crickets in the video are not moving is because they notice they’ve been spotted, and so have stopped chirping, in hopes I’d go away.

These bugs usually begin chirping in late July, and continue for at least two months, maybe longer. When they are gone, I do not miss them, but at least they are interesting to look at.

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