This time of year the Capt and I are often up long before dawn. At five a.m. this morning, it's still relatively cool outside, and I feel more energetic, eager to get things done in the garden. Sofia and Chica have things to do outside, too, so we file out the front door, into a world of bugs. The air is so full of them, I avoid opening my mouth, and keep a hand near my face to fan them out of my eyes. Flying bugs, clumsy bugs that seem to be spinning in circles at my feet, and millions of crickets. with their wall of sound.
Wikipedia says crickets sing by rubbing their wings together, not their legs, and only the males can sing. They have a quiet little courting song to attract the silent females, and a loud one for warning off other males. Their "ears" are located in an odd place, just below their knees. This time of year, with so many of them about, they're all very occupied with warning each other off, thus the wall of sound. And with such a population explosion, I shouldn't be surprised that quite a few of them end up inside my house. If it's true what they say in Barbados, that a cricket in the house brings money, we should be sitting pretty. But then again, crickets have been known to eat clothing, so a cricket in the closet might not be a good thing.
I discriminate when I choose what bugs to kill and what bugs to rescue and relocate outside the house. Without remorse, I'll mash a cockroach or a scorpion, but crickets get a free ride. I use a clear plastic container and a dustpan, and try to avoid damaging their legs or antennae when I scoop them up and carry them out.
Something I didn't know: Wikipedia says crickets can bite, and inflict pain if they chomp on a tender place like, for instance, the webbing between fingers.
In some parts of Southeast Asia and Mexico cricket fighting is popular, with betting, champion breeding and even mafia efforts to control the outcome of fights. I watched a Chinese cricket fight on YouTube, and it seemed to me most of it involved the owners goading the crickets with long, thin sticks to put them in a fighting mood. It's said that good fighting cricket can cost as much as a cow in some parts of China, which seems extravagant considering crickets only live 100 days.