Death by Orthoptera

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One of the conditions of my son getting to have a pet lizard (you can read about that whole debacle here if you have not already) was that he had to feed it.

Lizards eat crickets. And mealworms. Specifically, they like their prey alive and wriggling. If it ain’t fresh, that lizard ain’t eating it. With the amount I have now invested in this dad-gum lizard, it sure as hell better live a good long time.

I hate crickets. Especially those big, black, crunchy ones that can fly at your head or hop onto your leg without warning. Shudder.

So, this mamma doesn’t touch live crickets. Or mealworms.

The problem with having a four year old boy feed live crickets to a lizard?

Crickets hop.

Away.

Very fast.

Each night, at least one out of the three crickets intended for the lizard actually end up tasting freedom again in my living room rather than suffering an early demise as a tasty reptile hors d’ oeuvre.

There are dozens of them roaming my house!!!

I hear them at night, chirping happily. They must be breeding under the couch, behind the curtains, in all of the dark, hidden recesses of this old creaky house.

When they are sufficient in number, I have no doubt they are coming for us…

If this blog ever goes silent, you know why.

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37 thoughts on “Death by Orthoptera

  1. I think you’ve given me nightmares – attack by the freedom-seeking crickets!

    Any way you could put some kind of dome over the habitat so that he could put a container with one or two crickets into or under the dome and then open the container INSIDE the habitat? Or perhaps use a container of some kind that would only let one cricket out at a time? I’ve never had lizards, so of course, I’m only guessing.

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  2. Lizards are pets for 20+, so I guess you are the one to feed the critter. It is only once in 2-3 days I guess, so you have plenty of time for meditations and mastering your skills. Breeding the crickets will save you money. You wouldn’t use that space under the couch anyway. 🙂

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  3. Ha! i know exactly what you are talking about as my son in law also has a lizard and when they go on holiday guess who has to feed it (and the dog and hamsters)? Thankfully I’m not the squeamish type but the lizard does tend to loose weight when they’re away! ha!

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  4. I had a pet lizard in college. I rescued him after a biology experiment. One spring break my roommates were gone and I picked up a bag of crickets and left them on the counter. Two hours later I discovered they could chew their way through the paper bag. I called a friend and we spent hours finding them all. But my friend couldn’t keep his big mouth shut and my roommates found out. They demanded more stringent cricket containment measures. They were literature majors.

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  5. I have babysat a lizard for my friends. A week. Loved him to bits. They left a box of brown crickets, but the bloody things started dying. I got a box of black ones – it was a mistake, they are the ones making noise. I used the tweezers when feeding.

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  6. Perhaps lassoing the cricket first then offering him up as a sacrifice? Then he would only hop in circles. 🙂 Why aren’t lizard vegetarian? They would be so much easier to feed. Sigh. I have many more helpful solutions.

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  7. Forgive me for laughing, Victo, but this is funny..and entertaining and so so human. Not much choice
    if you want to keep a lizard. i used to have hedgehogs and they liked their food ‘live’ and mealworms it was. Good Luck!

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  8. We owned a lizard for a short time a few years ago, until his untimely demise. A 10-year-old is not much better at cricket control. My husband swears that this is why we still to this day have a cricket infestation.

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  9. Does the lizard require the crickets? or can it survive on the meal worms? If it can survive on just meal worms, restrict it’s diet to those, and use Playtex rubber gloves or something similar to handle the little critters until your youngster is old enough to handle the crickets a little more deftly. Am I correct in assuming you’re not a surgeon? I hope it all works out for you.

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