Mormon crickets have invaded the Village of Murphy in Owyhee County

Posted at 4:31 PM, Jun 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-01 18:31:40-04

Mormon crickets are scattered all over the Village of Murphy, these gigantic creepy crawlers have arrived at an inconvenient time as the village gears up to host Outpost Days this weekend.

Villagers said that the mormon crickets paid the village a visit seven years ago, this year they say they were caught off guard by the bugs and don't have any bait they used to kill the crickets in the past.

"I threw bait out which is pellets and the crickets came out of the trees, then they eat one another because they are cannibalistic and they died in droves," said Mary O'Malley. "Had we known this was happening we probably could have bought bait."

Rural Owyhee County has a lot of history, but the village is also about thirty miles away from a place they could buy bait, which is a pesticide used to kill these bugs.

A county commissioner told us they are working on getting bait and also working with the BLM to get help to take care of this problem.

The BLM told us they have a crew from APHIS in the area working to eradicate the crickets on public land, however the villagers said they are on their own but they didn't seem overly concerned mainly because the crickets don't bite or transmit disease, they just look bad.

"We are not too worried about them, they don't seem to be moving in too fast," said Debra Lindner who was busy preparing for Outpost Days. "We hope it doesn't discourage people from coming out, we have homemade pie that people can get, we are focused on history and the past."

Outpost Days runs from 10:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, the event will have live music, vendors, a demonstration by the fire department, a petting zoo, a frog race and the 49th annual Outpost Days will give people a chance to learn about the history of Owyhee County.

"We do have a very fascinating history," said Lindner. "Rumor has it that there was Hawaiians in the Mackensie fur trapping expedition that were lost in the mountains and they ended up naming the Owyhee mountains after them."

6 On Your Side also spoke with the Idaho Department of Agriculture who told us that people can get pesticide bait to kill the crickets, however people need to be aware of what they are buying while making sure they follow the directions and use the pesticides as intended.