6 legged spider/grasshopper
Thu, Jan 1, 2009 at 8:38 AM
I walked into my basement one day and I found this creature on my wall. It looked like a spider had mated with a grasshopper and this odd bug was what came of it. This bug did not seem to be aggressive. It was January first and I live in Fairmont, WV. The bug had long antennas, 6 legs, the two back ones looked like grasshopper legs and the 4 front one like spider legs. I believe I might have seen this creature before while in TN. What is this mysterious bug inhabiting my basement?

Camel Cricket

Camel Cricket

Hi Sarah,
Though your photo is blurry and the camera angle is not ideal for identifying your Camel Cricket, it is the time of the month for us to select the Bug of the Month for the New Year. Camel Crickets are also known as Cave Crickets and they are in the family Rhaphidophoridae. They frequent damp dark places. Basements are a perfect habitat for them. BugGuide indicates: “If these occur in a house the best treatment is to remove them and their breeding habitat – cool moist dark places such as piles of logs or boards in basements. A clean dry home will not be a welcoming place for these guys. Although they are scary-looking they are basically harmless to humans, except perhaps for minor damage to stored items, and are easily discouraged by eliminating the dark damp habitat they prefer.” Since your photo is not ideal for identification purposes, we will be including an older photo along with the Bug of the Month for January 2009 posting.

Shrimp-like Bug
Tue, Nov 25, 2008 at 11:59 PM
We have ‘smooshed’ a couple of these at my house recently. I can’t recall ever seeing them before. they can jump grasshoppers, perhaps even better than the grass hoppers we see around here.
The fact that it’s an insect is obvious. What’s less obvious is when shrimp made the transition to land. ;D It’s a rather dejected looking bug don’t you think?
So, whats that bug?
+1 dollar to the site if you can help me out.
North Carolina, US

Camel Cricket

Camel Cricket

Your insect is a Camel Cricket or Cave Cricket in the family Rhaphidophoridae. They are often found in basements and other dark, damp habitats. According to BugGuide: “Feed on leaf debris. In houses may chew on paper products, occasionally fabric.

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  1. artifact says:

    Hello, I was wondering if anyone can tell me if this is possible…..Ok, I have an old house with camel/cave crickets in my basement. Recently I had a rather large one make it’s way upstairs to the living quarters. I gave it the controlled “step” down , disabling it so I could catch and kill it. Ok , that all happened as planned. What’s next is totally bizarre! So I throw said carcass in the toilet bowl and go finish watching TV. I come back an hour later and there is this 4 or 5 inch long “worm” very thin with a tiny football shaped head swimming madly in my toilet bowl! So, did this come up somehow from my septic tank { highly unlikely in my opinion since it’s never happen in 35 years of living here} or was it inside that monster Camel cricket??? any help would be appreciated!!!

    • bugman says:

      Dear Artifact,
      This is a horsehair worm, an internal parasite of some Orthopterans. We have also gotten reports that they may parasitize some spiders.

  2. LaDonna says:

    I just have to add..those are some of the scariest type bugs I have ever seen..and let me tell you from experience..they bite!!

  3. christy says:

    how do i get rid of these camel crickets? is there a reason we only see them when it starts getting warm? All winter we never seen one, but now that it is getting warm, we are starting to see them come out.

  4. Heather Buckholtz says:

    Good to know the official name of these crickets. I live in Jonesboro, Arkansas and I’ve always heard them called “Jerusalem Crickets.” Oh, and in more humorous circles they are referred to as ‘giant-mutant-jumping-bugs.’ They are quite harmless, but they can definitely be alarming. They aren’t very common around here, except in some parts of the country. They used to be an issue in town, but I haven’t seen them very much in a few years. They are not aggressive, from my experience. They can do very quick damage to paper and fabric goods. I’m not a fan of killing bugs but this is one I do make an exception with, largely because I don’t like being surprised by a big honking bug that can jump at my face. That being said, they are also very unpleasant to kill because of the ‘squishiness.’ Can’t say I’ve ever heard anyone say they’ve been bitten before. Their legs are not to be trifled with. Often times I’ll come across a dried dead one outside or the remnants of one killed indoors…. painful to try to dig their little barbs out of the skin of your foot….

  5. moochie says:

    Here in in Easterrn NC I have captured and released several of these buggers. They have never bitten me, their long antennas were always waving, and those big eyes looked as if I could do more harm.Love me some bugs, espescially the weird ones

  6. Jamie Barlow says:

    Do camel back cricket s bite or sting? I have seen several of them in my building and my kids run around in there..

  7. cynthia says:

    I have camel crickets who are very big, fast, and intimadating. I can’t help but kill them due to the fact that they really frightin my daughters very much and me as well. I don’t understand why their in my apartment. Its not moist or anything like a basement so what’s the deal?

  8. hannah moore power says:

    so that is the official name for them. ill tell my fiancee and his family. we just moved into our own place and have spotted 2 or 3 of them but we dont have a bassement,only a crawl space. and let me tell you, my fiancee john is petrified of them. he grew up with them at his house in their basement type walkdown space.

  9. kicker says:

    I live in New Jersey just started seeing them last year.I always found them in the basement next to my clothes. But also found them in the shed.My wufe cannot stand them I just take care of getting rid of them..

  10. kicker says:

    What is the half inch long point in between the camel crickets back legs looks like a long thorn.

  11. Dennis Crawford says:

    Wow ! ..I thought I found a mutant cricket lol ..I live in eastern Pennsylvania been here all my life …but never seen this cricket before until recently …I find them in the hoods of underground propane tanks …I’ve been a propane delivery man for 14 years but only recently have seen these crickets in the hoods of a couple underground tanks …perfect environment for them as these hoods are cold damp and dark …I leave them alone but boy do they make a mess inside these hoods …freaky looking bug but seem harmless

  12. Gloria Barea says:

    Definitely creepy! I live in Indiana and saw a couple on the laundry room in basement.Very intimidating. Went quickly upstairs to get my tablet to take pix of this pair, not knowing what in the world they were. Funny, I asked Google what was this insect that looked like a spider cricket and yes, it came up right away. The camel cricket, although it has no resemblance to a camel from my eyes, but I certainly did not want to get any closer than I was. By the time I got back to take pix, they were gone! That made me more terrified! Where did they go??? Will I accidentally get closer than I ever want to because I don’t know where they are? Eek! They could be more afraid of me than I am of them. All I can say is, stay away, camel cricket.

    • bugman says:

      From what we have learned on BugGuide: “Most favor cool damp places – caves, rotten logs, under leaves or rocks. Will not reproduce indoors unless they find continuous dark, moist conditions.” Based on that, we would search near the plumbing, including the water heater, to locate the parts of your cellar that have “continuous dark, moist conditions.” and laundry room (don’t forget under the washing machine) because we suspect they might be breeding.

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