Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Five Hundred Crickets

I'm sitting at the kitchen counter typing this, listening to the sound of five hundred crickets chiriping away.  Delivered this morning from Healthycrickets.com, they are waiting to be put in their cricket keeper by Paul and his friend Tommy when they get home from golf camp at noon.  I'm sure they will  enjoy the task!

If you have a reptile for a pet, you soon find that you have to keep crickets, too.  Spikey eats about twenty of the critters every day, meaning that he can eat about a hundred and fifty live crickets a week.  That's a lot of crickets to buy and keep alive, and our two little store-bought "Cricket Keeper" containers just weren't up to the job.  We couldn't buy more than about fifty crickets at a time, resulting in going to the pet store every couple of days, something that was going to be even more of a nuisance  once the busy school year starts up again next week.  And too many of them died in the keeper, presumably from lack of air and space.  This was not only wasteful, but stinky, and not very nice to the crickets.  (Yes, I know they were going to die anyway, but meanwhile they deserved decent food and housing.) 

So we did some research to come up with a plan for a homemade cricket keeper that was big enough to hold several hundred crickets and designed to keep them alive until they were, shall we say, needed.

The prevailing wisdom on the Internet is that you should get a big, deep plastic tub and install air vents in it by drilling holes and fitting them with soffit vents.  So that's what we did, and quickly found out that drill neat holes into plastic isn't so easy.  After a lot of nasty work with the drill and the modeling by Ben of "how to act decently even when when you are frustrated" (yeah, Ben!), and the creative application of duct tape by me and Paul, we had our big cricket keeper.

We followed the online instructions for adding food, water, and hiding places (egg cartons), and added the crickets we had on hand.

This morning I noticed that they were all still alive, which was a big improvement over the smaller cricket keepers.

Is Spikey worth all this trouble?  Well, except for needing all these crickets, he is a pretty low maintenance pet, and is sometimes pretty entertaining.  The other night, we found him resting in a vertical position on his log, which we thought was pretty amusing. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear from you!