Cricket, cricket? Don’t let crickets keep you up at night! Photo credit: Naveen Mathew
by Jason Johnson
Although I love summer more than most things, there is one thing that I do value above anything else and that is a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately one of the main drawbacks of summer is how this becomes increasingly more difficult. Certain pests just make it impossible to catch those valuable 8 hours of beauty sleep.
The constant buzzing around my ear from a thirsty mosquito trying to slurp some of my delicious blood is easily the most annoying thing I can think of. But with my amazing aim and accuracy this problem is solved quite easily. I have been known to grab a mosquito right out of the air with my bare hands and squash against my forehead as a warning to the rest of them to leave me alone. It’s a very effective method. Please see my previous post for tips on how to get rid of mosquitoes.
I have to admit that mosquitoes though are not the biggest obstacle to my sleep during summer. This dubious honor belongs to the cricket. I have spent many nights hugging a pillow to my head so tightly that I have had to pop my eyes back into their sockets the next morning. I swear that both of these pests have developed magical powers with the soul purpose of annoying me and keeping me awake. After disturbing my sleep for hours, the moment I turn on the light in my attempt to hunt these little monsters, they seem to vanish into thin air.
I have spent countless hours, flashlight in hand, searching through my home to locate the exact the source of the noise. Without success. The moment I zone in on the spot the cricket lures me into false sense of security and goes quiet. I go back to bed thinking that I have scared it off, but the moment I nod off into what feels like the best 5 minute nap I have ever had it starts his annoying song once again.
While crickets are not enough to make me change my mind about how I feel about summer, they can make getting a decent nights rest seem like climbing Mount Everest.
I have compiled a list of 5 tips you can try at home to discourage crickets from settling in and around your home:
- Like most pests, crickets gain access to the home via entry points. Do a thorough inspection of your home and seal all entry points that could provide access for these critters.
- Crickets tend to live in grassy or bushy arrears. It is therefore advisable to keep the foundation and all surrounding areas grass free to discourage crickets from settling close to your home.
- Remove piles of bricks and rubbish as this also provide harborage for crickets. Also store firewood away from your home as this will also provide a safe haven for crickets like grass and other vegetation.
- It advisable that you replace your current lights with sodium vapour yellow lights as crickets are less attracted to these lights as opposed to mercury vapor lights. Try and install the sodium vapour lights close to your doors to discourage crickets to enter your home.
- Lastly, do some DIY pest control in and around your house. Pesticide sprays and powders are very effective in getting rid of crickets. Sprinkle some powder around the base of your homes foundation to create a barrier. Be sure to exercise caution when making use of DIY pesticides around the home. See tips on what to watch out for when making use of do-it-yourself products.
I have tried many other methods including using a power hose to wash the crickets out of their holes as well as sticking a vacuum into spots from which I can I hear the sound coming. These did not prove very effective but at least I felt like I was doing something! Short of drowning the sound out with white noise or earplugs, these tips are the most effective ways of ensuring that you get a pleasant night sleep. Sweet dreams!