Crickets in Albury – fill a bag for free!

No no, not cricket in Albury, there’s plenty of that already (and usually a game on at the local oval when I take the dog down there.) No I’m talking crickets in Albury aka the 2024 locust plague revisited. Only with crickets instead of locusts, obviously.

Man are these things everywhere. Including on me on one occasion..

Now if you’re hailing from a land where crickets are relatively unknown..

Crickets in Albury
By jiminy!

Then allow me to furnish you with some wiki action.

Crickets are orthopteran insects which are related to bush crickets, and, more distantly, to grasshoppers

-Wikipedia, a riveting article about crickets. Not just Crickets in Albury but everywhere.

So the distant cousin of the grasshopper, suddenly on mass not just here in Albury but also all over Melbourne it seems. And when I say on mass, I mean everywhere.

Crickets in Albury, the list so far

-The lower level of Wilson Street Carpark (I haven’t checked the other two levels but I guess they’ll be there too). When I walk into work daily there’s plenty of results of when crickets in Albury have wrestling matches with cars…and lose (including under the unforgiving tires of my Mazda).

-Priceline Pharmacy in Dean Street. I went to pick up a prescription and while I waited there one suddenly appeared between two aisles. I don’t think he/she/the cricket was there for any shopping or medical purpose but don’t quote me, for I am not a trained entomologist.

-Actually there’s been a few walking (skittering? Crawling?) up and down Dean Street Albury this week. I get it, it’s not a bad place for a stroll.

-iHealth doctors surgery. It wasn’t wearing a mask either.

-The offices at work. Earlier this week there were a few hanging out in the hallway, a couple of the kitchen and one tried to get into a podcast studio but met someone’s heel first. The interesting part about this is that we’re on the first floor which means either they jumped the stairs, they learnt how to use the elevator or more than likely..

-On me. I kid you not, there I was in the middle of an interview (not talking about crickets in Albury even though it’s a bit of a hot topic at the moment) and when I looked down, there was one resting on my knee. It probably hitched a ride on my pants leg from the car park and just waited for the prime opportunity to come and say hi. Unfortunately I was wearing headphones at the time which meant I didn’t get to hear the feedback on my interview it was trying to share. Well not before it got flicked off into the studio wall anyway.

Watching, waiting, critiquing.

Strangely though, I live in East Albury up in the hills and for whatever reason I’m not seeing them here. No seriously, I have expected my sunken car park and brick ramp up onto the street to be covered in them (or more to the point more results of when crickets meet Mazda tires at slow speeds) but no, not even a stray leg or antenna.

Either the climb up is too taxing, they don’t like hills or possibly..

Ahh yes, Kiki the wondercat. Ruiner of low flying birds and field mice who stray into the backyard. Is she also playing one cat Crickets in Albury cleanup crew while we slumber? The jury is still out! (But I wouldn’t put it past her..)

The good news is even though they’re all over town, they’re not dangerous. They’re not prone to mugging, arson or car jacking. Phew!

Crickets in Albury, danger level low

Dr Howard said crickets are not dangerous and advised people to be “be kind to them”.

“Keep your fly screens shut and they should stay out,” she said.

-Dr Howard quoted in this News.com.au article

Yes usually I pan the articles from that website (especially their reliance on spending hours on Tik Tok and Reddit looking for something that they can turn into ‘news’) however occasionally they do have the answers I’m actually looking for, namely at the moment: why are there so many of these bloody things all over town???

And once again it’s the super helpful Dr Howard to the rescue

“It goes back to our last winter,” Dr Walker said.

“If we have a very dry winter then things survive very nicely.

“Our winter was very mild, we didn’t get freezing conditions that kill a lot of insects.

“It was so mild that rather then waiting till spring to mate they were actually able to reproduce at winter because they were able to start early so we have this explosion of crickets.”

-Dr Howard again, bringing the facts we’ve been looking for.
No not this Howard. Not an entomologist.

So it’s winters fault really. It put its feet up over it’s own season and now there’s Crickets in Albury all over the place. Thanks for nothing then Winter!

Of course it’s not just here

I’m just writing about here cos hey, it’s easy to wax lyrical over your own backyard. Our crickets in Albury conditions haven’t reach Heildelberg Melbourne proportions yet (check out this video on Reddit!) but if their favourable breeding conditions continue we could have our own localised versions of this..

@3aw_melbourne

Noticed more crickets in Melbourne recently? You’re not the only one. 🦗 #fyp #melbourneweather #crickets #insects #news

♬ original sound – 3AW Melbourne
Although I don’t think this Tik Tokker (is that what you call someone on the platform?) is the only one who feels this way about the ongoing invasion..
@sharrmanmaran

Send a SWAT team immediately these crickets are not playing 🦗 #fyp #melbourne #crickets

♬ original sound – sharrman

So with these Crickets in Albury, what do we do then?

Cast your mind back to the locust plague of way back when (circa 2021) when we had such an abundance of the damn things, people were starting to use them as a free pizza topping. (Remember the mesh covers people were putting on the front of their cars to prevent smashed locusts gumming up their radiators?)

That ended over time by bugs getting squashed, bugs getting eaten (pizza or otherwise) and generally just the circle of life/time/seasons changing etc.

Which means sooner or later (some people are really hanging on that sooner notion) we’ll get to a time in life where we’ll chat over coffee and remark ‘Remember that time we had so many crickets in Albury?’.

It’s just going to take time. And undoubtedly the next thing we’ll be talking about shortly after all this has ended (possibly over an insect free bbq) is:

‘Hey has anyone noticed how fat the local birds have gotten all of a sudden?’

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