July 11, 2023 | Susan Napier-Sewell

What does a bad day look like? A plague of blood-red crickets


People in a Nevada town thought a horrific car accident had happened; streets were swarming with blood-red crickets.

AP reports, “The ground surrounding Elko’s stretch of Interstate 80 looked as if it had been covered in blood. . . .

“Tens of thousands of Mormon cricket eggs buried about an inch deep in the soil began to hatch in late May and early June. For weeks, the red critters have been invading swaths of northern Nevada and causing chaos, said the state’s longtime entomologist Jeff Knight.

“The invasion of the cannibalistic crickets has hit especially hard in Elko, a small town of about 20,000 near Idaho and Utah known for its gold mining.

“Residents and workers have tried to use brooms, leaf blowers, pressure washers and snow plows to get rid of the crickets, only for them to return. State officials have erected signs throughout Elko County warning drivers of slick highways, a popular hangout spot for insects that won’t think twice about eating their dead friends.

“The red creatures blanket highways and scuttle over barriers, seeking food. They crackle and pop under the wheels of trucks, creating something like an oil slick, said Jeremiah Moore of Spring Creek, whose vehicle slid off the road after a highway encounter with the Mormon crickets.

“One hospital even hired four temporary, part-time employees whose main duty was to clear the campus of the crickets long enough for patients to enter the building. The group called itself the Cricket Patrol.”

Content source/credit: AP, “Blood-red crickets invade Nevada town, residents fight back with brooms, leaf blowers, snow plows,” by Rio Yamat and Rick Bowmer, June 20, 2023.

Photo source/credit: Yahoo News, UK Euronews video, “Nevada confronts invasion of blood-red crickets,” Tuesday, June 20, 2023.

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What Does a Bad Day Look Like?
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