European House Cricket: Acheta domesticus

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Life cycle

The life cycle of the house cricket can be divided into 3 stages: egg, nymph, and adults. It takes about 40 to 45 days from egg to adulthood (FAO, 2014) and the complete life cycle takes around 2 to 3 months when reared from 26 ºC to 32 ºC. At the final molt, the female house crickets weigh an average of 400 +- 14 mg and the male 368 +- 5 mg (Clifford, 1990).

  • Eggs hatching:

At 30 ºC, the eggs hatch after 13 days and become nymphs (Clifford, 1977). However, the incubation time depends on the conditions.

Clifford (1977) concludes in his research paper that: “Egg incubation time is unacceptably long at room temperature. Stone (1953) hatched eggs in 30 days at 27°C, Kemper (1937) gives an incubation time of 56-84 days at room temperature (unspecified), and Busvine (1955) found that incubation duration was 46—51 days at 23°C. We find a consistent incubation period of 13 days at 30±0.5°C.”

  • Nymph period:

The nymphs undergo a series of molts before they reach their adulthood after 6 to 8 weeks (FAO, 2014). The number of molts in normal development has been reported variously from 6 to 12.

Patton (1978) reports that the amount of instars were 10, after photographing the nymphs for 45 days. Whereas Clifford (1990) report that the amount of instars are 8 – 9, and Nix and Bass (1973)concluded that there are 6 instars.

  • Adulthood:

Females will not lay eggs unless mated. After reaching adulthood, the females are capable of mating within 2 days. However, females will start laying eggs on the 9th day of their adulthood(Clifford, 1990). The amount of eggs females will lay depends on the conditions.

According to Clifford (1990) the females will lay around 95 eggs per day but will of 55 eggs day at the middle of egg-laying period until their death, and mated females can lay up to 3000 +- 245 eggs during the adult life of 70 days. However, Flukkerfarm mentions in their cricket biology guide that a single female will batch of 50-100 eggs every 2-3 days over a period of two months.

The cycle begins again, after an incubation period of 13 days under optimal conditions.


  • _Clifford C.W. et al., 1978. Rearing Methods for Obtaining House Crickets, Acheta domesticus, of Known Age, Sex, and Instar
  • Clifford C.W. & Woodring J.P., 1990. Methods for rearing the house cricket, Acheta domesticus (L.),along with baseline values for feeding rates, growth rates, development times, and blood composition
  • FAO, 2014. Edible insects in Lao PDR: building on tradition to enhance food security
  • Nix, P. M., and M. H. Bass, 1973. Biological and toxicological notes on the house cricket.
  • Patton R.L., 1978. Growth and Development Parameters for Acheta domesticus


Credit: Tiny Farms Open Bug Farm