NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP)- If you can't hear them, you're sure to see them. Crickets have been plaguing North Platte this week, swarming around the walls and ceiling crevices of stores, restaurants, even the KNOP TV studio.
There is some good news about the nuisance, though -- it should only last about a week or two.
Crickets are everywhere due to the outside lights on several buildings and the heat they produce. (Source: Erika Siebring, KNOP TV)
David Boxler is an extension educator at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and has studied insects extensively. He says the swarming is due to the cricket's mating season. But once the females are finishing laying eggs, it should all die down.
"It seems like these populations explode following weather events like we've encountered," Boxler said.
Boxler says the moisture North Platte accumulated over the summer and spring caused an increase in the food supply. This in turn contribute to the amount of insects we are seeing all over town. They are also attracted to the heat of brick and concrete buildings, and outside lights that are left on during the night. This includes places like Wal-Mart and Burger King.
"You need to probably change to a yellow incandescent bulb or an led, which is less attractive to these insects," Boxler said.
If turning off or changing the light bulbs isn't possible, Boxler says the next best defense is to keep the crickets from entering your home.
Make sure the weather stripping on all your windows and doors are sealed tight.