They arrived hungry and in numbers too great to count, crawling all over homes, businesses and roads, Nevada video shows.
“This has literally been the worst day of my life. Well, maybe not the worst, but it’s definitely, by far the most disgusting,” Colette Reynolds said in a viral TikTok video, showing Mormon crickets gathered all around her home — on the pavement, the walls, and in the grass.
“I’m legitimately petrified to go back inside because they’re there and they jump on you,” she said, calling the bug invasion “absolutely foul.”
In a followup video, a man uses a leaf blower to clear bugs away from the front door while he retrieves packages.
“Oh thank god my hero is here,” she says. “He looks disgusted and defeated just like I do.”
Mormon crickets, which are actually a type of katydid, periodically emerge in the region — including parts of Nevada, Utah and Idaho, the Idaho Statesman reported.
One town in northeastern Nevada, Elko, has been living through an invasion of disgusting proportions, video shows.
“You can see that they’re moving and crawling, and the whole road’s crawling and it just makes your skin crawl,” Elko resident Stephanie Garrett told SkyNews. “It’s just so gross.”
In the interest of safety, state workers have been plowing and sanding highways near Elko to clear them of dead Mormon crickets, the Nevada Department of Transportation said in a June 15 Facebook post.
“These signs on area highways are a reminder to TAKE IT SLOW when crickets make for potentially slick driving,” the post said.
While they can’t really hurt people, they can and have devastated crops, emerging in great numbers to chow down on plants, according to the University of Nevada. And if there’s not any plants around to eat, the Mormon crickets will simply feast on each other.
On top of that, they are, to use a highly scientific term, gross.
When crushed, they tend to give off a particularly strong and unpleasant odor, the Idaho Statesman reported.
“Not only do Mormon crickets eat plants causing damage or economic loss, their presence in doing so may be detrimental,” according to the University of Arizona. “Structures and hardscapes may be superficially stained with feces or crushed crickets, creating a clean-up cost to property managers of condominiums, parks, golf courses, etc., or home owners.”
Mormon cricket outbreaks tend to last between 4 to 6 years and will taper off naturally thanks to predators, Nevada’s state entomologist, Jeff Knight, told NBC. In the meantime, residents will just have to bear it.
“A lot of people don’t like big scary, nasty-looking insects. These things get about the size of your thumb as an adult,” Nevada’s state entomologist, Jeff Knight, told NBC. “So when you have a couple hundred or a couple thousand of them in your yard, that can be, to some people, pretty terrifying.”