Why Crickets are Dying and You Should Give a Shit

For once, the hot topic in the Canadian reptile feeder industry isn't debate over cockroaches;  a more imminent problem has appeared within the last few months, and is now at a critical point. The aptly named "Cricket Paralysis Virus" tends to effect crickets in the pre-adult, or pre-wing stage, and does exactly what you would think: total paralysis resulting in death. There's no clearly defined vector for the virus, but there is plenty of speculation. Most seems to be centring around waxworms or those little beetle larvae, Dermestes ater, that hitch-hike harmlessly (we've always assumed) along with crickets. The virus spreads like delicious grape jelly (exceptionally well), and has wiped out the majority of cricket producers in the United States and Canada, leaving only a few farms scrambling to meet the pan-national demand.