Getting rid of crickets in a home or office can be done with traps, with chemicals, or by introducing predators. The best method will usually depend on your situation and how bad the infestation is. Once the crickets have been eliminated, don’t forget to look into prevention measures — if they got in once, they are likely to get in again. In order to really get rid of crickets once and for all, you will have to stop their entry at its source.
Setting food traps is often one of the easiest ways to get rid of crickets, and in most cases, this can be done with ordinary household items. Mixing a small amount of molasses and water in a deep jar is usually very effective. The crickets will be attracted to the sweet smell but will fall in and suffocate.
A so-called “pitfall trap” works in a similar way, but can be a bit harder to set up. You will need a two-tiered container, or a cup that can balance on top of a small bowl. Place a sweet food, like a sugary cereal or bit of sweetened milk, into the bottom container; in the top, pour grain alcohol. The crickets will smell the food, and will fly into the alcohol in order to get it. This will usually kill them. It is important that alcohol be used here, as crickets can usually escape from plain water. Water will not kill them if they inhale it, either, but alcohol — like molasses — usually will.
A number of commercial manufacturers sell professional-grade sticky traps that can be used with success. Most of these are made with pheromones, hormones that are attractive to crickets but virtually undetectable to humans. When the crickets sense these hormones in the air, they will fly towards them — and usually end up stuck on the adhesive paper that is attached. These sorts of traps tend to get a lot of criticism from animal rights activists because they do not actually kill the crickets; rather, they immobilize them, leading them to die a slow and often prolonged death, typically by starvation.
Some people have good luck spraying invasive crickets with professional-grade bug sprays, most of which are made with a range of different chemicals. These are usually very effective at killing bugs on contact, but tend to work best for only small invasions. It can be hard to get rid of crickets this way if there are whole swarms descending at once, as it is very labor-intensive. It can also be inexact, as the remaining crickets will simply navigate around the dead. Spraying a lot of chemicals can also be harmful for humans to inhale, and it is rarely recommended for families with small children or pets.
Cats, lizards, and birds are all natural cricket predators, and can be an easy and safe way to get rid of the insects in a pinch. House cats and domesticated birds are usually the best options, as they can easily be kept under control; lizards are most effective when someone is able to constantly keep an eye on their whereabouts. Lizards left unattended have a tendency to wander off or get lost.
One of the best ways to get rid of crickets is to prevent their entry in the first place. Homeowners should take care to look around their homes for cracks in either the sealant or the foundation. Even small openings around doors and windows can let crickets in, so these should be patched or plugged right away.
Making sure that no trash is piled up against the outside of the building can also help prevent crickets from getting in. It is a good idea to trim tall grasses and weeds that are growing nearby, and to promptly move garden debris to the perimeter of your property.