For those who’ve never kept crickets before, it may come as a surprise just how much the little guys can poop.  Not only that, but they also molt.  This can create quite a mess when you’ve got several hundred insects living in closely confined quarters.  Fresh food and gut loads may also begin to decompose and start to smell bad if they are not dealt with promptly.

Here are a few tips to help you when it comes time to clean the cricket cage:

1.) Decide Whether to Scoop the Poop or the Crickets  –  Although I outline my recommended method in Cricket Breeding Made Easy, it is possible to keep the crickets in the cage while you do basic cleaning.  Obviously, they’ll have to be moved when it’s time to do a real washing and disinfecting.  For general poop upkeep, the choice is yours.

One way to clean while the buggers are still in there is to tilt the entire enclosure to one side so that everything slides to that end.  Be sure to take the water out first though.  Then take the egg crates and move them to the other end.  Most of the crickets will stay attached to the egg crates so they will not get in your way when you scoop out the gunk that has collected on the opposite side.

2.) Make Full Use of the Egg CratesEgg crates are a magical phenomenon that should not be underestimated.  Place them inside a cricket bin and within minutes they’ll be covered with crickets.  Cardboard crates are excellent vehicles for transporting crickets between containers.

3.) Move Swiftly and Smoothly – When transporting egg cartons full of crickets, move as quickly and smoothly as possible.  Avoid any sudden or jerky movements that may incite a hopper to hop off the crate!  Your goal is to get the crates from one container to the next without losing a cricket. It helps if the transportation distance is as short as possible.  Try to keep the two enclosures next to each other and this will prevent escapes.

4.)  Be Careful with Pinheads – Pinhead crickets are extremely fragile and get injured easily.  I advise against moving them because you can end up killing most of them by accident. Because of their size, they are also much better at getting loose. It is best to clean a cage before the pinheads hatch.  Afterward, refrain from moving them until they are at least 1/4 an inch long.

5.) Don’t Waste Good Food – Before you start dumping everything out, make sure you’ve removed any good food from the cage.  It would be a shame to waste food that is still fresh. Take it out and move it somewhere first.  Once you’ve finished cleaning, place it back in the cage so that it gets eaten. On the contrary, don’t hold on to any food that may be less than fresh.

More tips coming soon.  In the meantime, be sure to opt in to our free cricket breeding e-course and get the complete system to breeding and keeping crickets!

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