Beneficial of the Month – Jerusalem Cricket AKA: Potato Bug – (Genus: Stenopelmatus)
Jerusalem crickets (or potato bugs) are a group of large, flightless insects of genus Stenopelmatus. They are native to the western United States and parts of Mexico. Despite their common names, these insects are neither true crickets (which belong to the family Gryllidae) nor true bugs (which belong to the order Hemiptera), nor are they native to Jerusalem. These nocturnal insects use their strong mandibles to feed primarily on dead organic matter but can also eat other insects. Their highly adapted feet are used for burrowing beneath decaying root plants and tubers.
While Jerusalem crickets are not venomous, they can emit a foul smell and can inflict a painful bite.
Like true crickets, each species of Jerusalem cricket produces a different song during mating. This song takes the form of a characteristic drumming in which the insect beats its abdomen against the ground.
Jerusalem crickets do NOT eat potatoes
Source: Wikipedia.com Photos: Wikipedia