Crickets chirp to attract females. They produce various types of sounds based on different species. For example, the chirping sound of field cricket will reach up to 100 decibels and the chirp of mole cricket will reach up to 88 decibels. They are like the cicada in this way.
Male crickets create sounds and produce chirping songs by rubbing the two unique organs which are called the file and scraper that are located in their front wings. This is called stridulation wherein sexually mature males sing so they can attract female crickets.
Only male crickets chirp to attract, woo, and court the female ones and to threaten or warn male crickets. This alarm sound will also occur when a rival male enter their territory.
Most of the crickets’ species sing at night and most people already experienced their sound especially in warm summer evenings while some chirp during daytime hours.
Both female and male crickets hear sound through their ears located in their front legs. Female crickets can not produce sounds but they will fly or walk going to the singing males which are called phonotaxis, which is female crickets’ behavioral pattern of movement in response toward a sound.
If different crickets will all chirp together at the same time, they will adjust the timing of sounds being produced. Results of studies show that there are male crickets that lead the calls rather than its pattern or a certain length of the call. Species like female fall field cricket normally choose the chirp of older males as mates than the younger ones because these older males inhabit areas that have rich resources of food, live longer, and produce songs more often.
The sound of the crickets can also be risky for them. As the male ones sing songs to attract female crickets, with these sounds they can also attract the attention of their predators like the parasitoid flies. A special kind of parasitoid fly which is the tachinid fly listens for their sounds for them to lay eggs on crickets. After the eggs of parasitoid fly hatch into larvae and start to feed on cricket, the cricket will die within a week or more.
When Do They Usually Chirp?
Some crickets chirp in day time but most of them start producing this sound after sundown. They chirp at night for three main reasons: first is they are sleeping during the day as they are nocturnal; second is they are looking for some food, and third is they are chirping to call out females for mating purposes since most of their behavior is dictated on their mating patterns. The continuous chirping you heard at night is their efforts of diligent attempts to male father offspring.
Do They Come Out During the Day?
Crickets are nocturnal which means they prefer night over day. Most of their daytime is spent sleeping and they do their cricket activities like looking for food and chirping at night.
They won’t come out during the daytime, as they usually hide in dark places such as in the cracks of the bark of the tree, grasslands, meadows, under rocks, small caves, and in some shadow spots. Some species of crickets primarily stay on the ground as they mostly hide during the daytime.
In the daytime, they live in the same areas where they hang out at night time. Since they are vulnerable insects as they do not have a defense in mechanism, the best thing they can do is to prefer staying in their areas where they have small chances to be caught by their predators.