Fighting Mormon Cricket Invasions With Hard Rock and Boom Boxes

Mormon crickets are insects with multiple wives who live in Utah, travelling to Nevada to eat crops and play craps—or something like that. I'm not David Attenborough, OK? One real thing: They hate rock music.

They hate it so much that residents of Tuscarora, Nevada, fight this pest with a perimeter of—get this—boom boxes and stereos playing hard rock, tuning to local radio station KHIX. They don't want to kill them, but not because they are a bunch of tree-huggin green commie hippies, but because when you kill them they smell horrible, according to them.

The plague of the two-inch-long walking Mormon cricket—who are born in April in northern Nevada and western Utah—comes every year, devastating crops and anything green, and even causing car accidents. Their two by one miles marching columns are so dense that, when passed over on roads, they form slippery blood and guts spills that may cause automobiles to lose grip and crash. In 2008 they had to call snowplows to clean the highway that goes through Elko County in Nevada.

So people in Tuscarora use the only tool they know to convince them to take another path without killing them: Hard rock and heavy metal during the day, since at night the critters sleep—while they are not eating the fellow crickets that die during the march. And while there's no scientific evidence that strong sound waves like those produced by the likes of Kiss and Metallica, the thing is that it works for them. [WSJ]

Trending Stories Right Now