Detroit Zoo cricket breeding program aims to feed animals while cutting costs


By: Associated Press

ROYAL OAK, Mich. (AP) — A new cricket breeding program at the Detroit Zoo is part of an effort to cut the cost of feeding animals.

The zoo in the Detroit suburb of Royal Oak says crickets are part of the daily diet of about 1,900 amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals at the zoo.

The zoo says it usually spends more than $98,000 a year to buy crickets.

With the breeding initiative announced Wednesday, the Detroit Zoological Society projects it will save about $225,000 in the first three years. Chief life sciences officer Scott Carter says in a statement it “guarantees an unlimited supply of healthy crickets” and eliminates shipping.

In order to establish the program, officials say part of a zoo building was renovated and 4,000 adult breeder crickets were acquired.