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Camel Cricket Census

Camel Cricket Census

Your Wild Life researchers ask citizen scientists to report their sightings and share photos of these leggy beasts. To date, their network of keen citizen observers has reported a preponderance of camel crickets in their basements, garages and garden sheds.

Camel crickets get their name because of their slightly humpbacked appearance. Their long legs give them a spider-like appearance. Unlike other crickets, they do not have wings as adults.

Some interesting patterns in cricket distribution have emerged, and the researchers have learned that a Japanese camel cricket is way more common in the US than previously thought. The researchers report that the vast majority of pictures shared with them starred a camel cricket native to Japan, not North America: Diestrammena asynamora.

Project Details

  • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Katlin Mooneyham
  • SCIENTIST AFFILIATION: North Carolina State University/ Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech)
  • DATES: Ongoing
  • PROJECT TYPE: Observation
  • COST: Free
  • GRADE LEVEL: All Ages
  • TIME COMMITMENT: Variable
  • HOW TO JOIN:

    Visit the project Web site and share your observations.

See more projects in FreeObservationAll Ages.

What Is Citizen Science?

Research often involves teams of scientists collaborating across continents. Now, using the power of the Internet, non-specialists are participating, too. Citizen Science falls into many categories. A pioneering project was SETI@Home, which has harnessed the idle computing time of millions of participants in the search for extraterrestrial life. Citizen scientists also act as volunteer classifiers of heavenly objects, such as in Galaxy Zoo. They make observations of the natural world, as in The Great Sunflower Project. And they even solve puzzles to design proteins, such as FoldIt. We'll add projects regularly—and please tell us about others you like as well.

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