Cannibalistic giant crickets invade small town: See video
Tuesday, June 5, 2018, 5:55 AM - Mormon crickets have invaded a small town in Idaho, catching residents off guard.
They last made an appearance in the village of Murphy seven years ago. Residents were able to keep the insect outbreak at bay with the use of pesticides, but this year, the bugs showed up before locals had baited the area.
"I threw the bait out, which was pellets, and they came out of the trees, out of the rose bushes, ate the bait, and then they eat one another 'cause they're cannibalistic and died in droves," resident Mary O'Malley told the Wyoming Country Report.
Mormon crickets– Anabrus simplex – usually live in small populations across western portions of North America, but under favourable conditions population explosions can occur, resulting in bands that number in the millions.
The bugs are large flightless grasshopper-like insects and not true crickets, according to newscientist.com. In order to stay alive, the the insects must outrun other hungry crickets that might eat them for their own protein and salt content.
Experts aren't exactly sure what causes the population booms, but weather is thought to be a factor.
The crickets don't bite or carry diseases, and they aren't a threat to humans or animals.
They do, however pose an aesthetic problem which can put a dent in tourism.