Crickets are famous insects. You’d probably know cricket is around not just because it’s an insect but because of two popular traits; jumping and noisemaking, known as chirping.
You can find chirping crickets almost everywhere, especially in your basement. They will cry and sing mercilessly until you approach it, and the singing dies down.
The insects are most active during summers.
But why do crickets make lots of noise?
Chirping by crickets could mean many things, top among the reasons include:
- They are warning each other of an impending threat.
- The male is trying to attract a female.
- A male is fighting off another male.
This article will look at 5 significant facts behind the cricket’s continuous chirping, especially why they are active at different times and who is responsible for the chirping.
The male species is responsible for the noisemaking among the reasons stated. The females do not chirp but use the chirping as signals.
The males make noises by rubbing the edges of the forewings together to produce sounds. This process is called Stridulation.
When the males want to mate with the females, the song is usually calm and courteous, encouraging the female to draw close.
An aggressive tone means the male is trying to draw territory, warning other males to steer off.
Why do Crickets Make Noise after Rain?
For crickets, their body can determine the amount of water in the soil and the humidity in the atmosphere. These two factors play a significant role in the life of a cricket.
Crickets are primarily cold-blooded insects, and the males come out after rain to sing out and attract the females.
Coming out after a rain isn’t just for mating purposes. Crickets come out because their body prefers water, and they use the wet weather to jump about, escaping their predators.
Most insects prefer being indoors when it rains or after the shower, including the predators to crickets.
Crickets are highly adaptable animals, and they use this medium to move about freely without the fear of an attack from their enemies.
Their bodies can also detect a change in temperatures, so they prefer to move about after the weather is a bit dry.
Why do Crickets Make Noise in the Morning?
During the day, crickets come out to chirp and attract their mating females.
Mornings are not ideal for them to chirp, but they use that time to move out, signal to others if the area is safe, warn others, and mate too.
A particular reason they do not make much noise in the morning like in the night is the increased sense of danger.
As stated, crickets are more of an adaptive species. They can sense danger through a particular vibrating sensor built into their body.
As the morning light breaks out, all animals come out to hunt for food. The crickets then become a prime target.
The signature noise made by crickets is notably low in the morning, though. That’s why you may think they are inactive during the day or are sleeping.
Making noises in the mornings is beneficial because the temperature will be warmer than at night. Temperatures are essential as it provides the ideal channel for the chirping sounds waves.
The warmer or higher the temperature, the faster the pulse of the sound travels.
So, while the frequency of their noise making may be lower in the day than at night, the warm temperature carries their singing faster.
This helps the smaller number of females awake to move to a mating partner.
Why do Crickets make Noise only at Night?
Some insect experts claim crickets are nocturnal animals, sleeping during the day and becoming active at night.
Although this was thought to be true initially, crickets are also as active in the day as the night. The difference is that the noise frequency in the day is lower than at night.
For a typical male cricket, the night is a perfect cover for them to fulfill all three reasons why they make noise.
An adult male comes out at night to make all types of noises to attract a female. Females being active at night are present and excited.
They can move to the males, exhibiting a behavioral pattern known as Phonotaxis. This phenomenon describes the attraction to a sound.
The cricket’s predators are fewer in number at night, specifically bats. Bats can detect cricket’s noise and will try to follow the sound to catch them.
Crickets, however, adapt by becoming silent as they track the movement of the bat when nearby.
The dead of the nights is much safer for the crickets to sing out since they can sense the vibrating movements of their enemies and will keep quiet until all seems safe again.
This is a particular reason why your basement below will be loud with cries of crickets, only for everywhere to become silent when you step in.
If you wait long enough in the silence, they will start singing again.
Crickets are super sensitive to noise and vibrations.
They possess a warning nerve that warns them of even the slightest noise when they’re in danger. Asides from humans, bats, as indicated earlier, are the sworn enemies of crickets.
Crickets make noise to Establish Dominance over Territory
The male crickets make a different noise to establish dominance and mark their territory.
Although it might not be audible to the human ears, a high short-term sound in both pitch and frequency signify an aggressive tone.
They use this sound to fend off other males and are also aggressive if they do not contact females for four days or more.
Fighting for food is not as aggressive as when perceived competition for a female mating partner.
The stages of aggression are divided into five. The first is a mild warning with no physical fighting. The fifth stage is the most aggressive, resulting in severe fighting.
Crickets are mostly known for jumping around and making noises.
What you may not know is that they have reasons for making sounds and have preferable times when they chirp.
As well as the mornings, they also prefer to chirp after a rain, in the mornings and at night.
Why do we hear more insect sounds during the rainy season?
How do crickets predict storms?
Do crickets chirp during the day?