Mole crickets are not nature's most beautiful insect specimens. Adults are odd-looking light brown crickets. The front legs are short, flat, and shaped like miniature shovels well equipped for digging in your yard. The immature insects, or nymphs, look the same as the adults, just smaller. Both, however, feed on the grass roots.
Mole cricket Photo Credits: Theresa Friday, Santa Rosa County Extension
Walking across your grass may give you a hint to an infestation. The sod will have an unusual fluffiness to it. Closer examination will reveal holes in the ground about the size of a pencil. Small burrowing trails can also be seen.
However, we always want to confirm the presence of mole crickets. Mix two tablespoons of lemon liquid dishwashing soap in two gallons of water in a sprinkling can, and pour the solution onto a two by two foot section of affected turf. If two to four mole crickets emerge within four minutes after applying the soap solution, insecticide use may be justified.
For more information on how to treat for mole crickets, review a University of Florida online publication at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/lh034.