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posted: 1/19/2013 5:00 AM

Homemade bait will banish crickets

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By Dwight Barnett

Q. Can you please print the information on how to get rid of crickets?

A. Camel crickets, also known as cave crickets and spider crickets, find a dark damp basement or crawl space an ideal area in which to live and breed. I have read that some exterminators recommend glue traps to capture these pests and some will inform the homeowner to use wasp spray to kill individual crickets.

The problem is, where you may see only one cricket there are probably hundreds more hiding in the dark confines of your home. Here is a recipe sent to me by a reader many years ago, and requested often since. It really works. The crickets will usually disappear in two to three days.

Cricket extermination recipe

8 ounces granular (not liquid) boric acid

cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 small onion, chopped

cup bacon drippings

A few drops water

•Keep this away from pets and small children

•Mix flour and boric acid and stir in chopped onion. Blend into creamed bacon grease and sugar. Add just enough water (only a dribble) to form soft dough. Shape into small balls.

•This concoction will eat its way through waxed paper and leave a greasy residue, so place the balls on plastic coffee can lids, aluminum foil, or discarded saucers, etc. If you get the bait too thin to make balls, which is easy to do, just spoon some onto the dish. It will work.

•Place bait where crickets are likely to appear -- usually in the garage, on patios, in storage barns and buildings, and sometimes even in kitchens and bathrooms.

•Remember to throw several under the house, but keep them away from pets and small children. When the bait dries out, replace it with fresh bait until crickets are gone. Store the excess in labeled plastic or glass containers in refrigerator or freezer.

• Dwight Barnett is a certified master inspector with the American Society of Home Inspectors. Write to him with home improvement questions at

Scripps Howard News Service

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