What’s That Noise? – Noises Pests Make and How to Identify Them

What’s That Noise? – Noises Pests Make and How to Identify Them


It is virtually impossible to have rodents in your home and not hear anything. Aside from the rustling and scurrying you may hear as they make their way through your walls and around your home, you may hear a good portion of scratching. This could indicate that the rats or mice and branching out into new areas of your home. There’s also often some notable gnawing or chewing noises that can be heard within walls as they destroy walls and fixtures to make room for their growing nests.

Carpenter Ants

Ants aren’t known for making noise, but when a construction project is going down within your home, you are bound to hear something. Unlike their wood-munching cousins, termites, carpenter ants do not actually consume wood, rather, they carve off tiny shavings in order to build complex nests. This can result in two different noises…

During the actual “construction” you may hear a soft, barely audible rustling noise within your walls. Once the wall is hollowed out by the ants, you can knock on it and hear the familiar resonation of hollow wood. If the nest is later active in the hollowed-out area, sound will reverberate more, allowing for the rustling noises of the ants to be more audible.


Crickets make noise through a movement called stridulation. This is when one part of the body is rubbed against another body part for communication and, depending on the insect, the body parts differ. For example, grasshoppers will rub their legs together or a leg and a wing. In the case of crickets however, they stridulate using their wings – this creates the telltale chirping noise you will hear whenever you’re in the vicinity of vivacious crickets.

Wolf Spider

Spiders don’t have ears… so why would they make noise? On a base level, sound is a series of vibrations that can be carried through the air in order to be processed within our eardrums. So while we can digest these sound auditorily, the spiders are processing the vibrations through feel. The noise that wolf spiders make is often referred to as “purring. It is created through the scraping of two small rough appendages near their mouth together and transmitting that vibration through leaves to attract mates.


5 Signs You Have Carpenter Ants (2020) Pest Patrol. Available at: https://www.pestpatrolonline.net/5-signs-you-have-a-carpenter-ant-infestation/ (Accessed: June 2020).

Crickets and Temperature (N/A) UNL Department of Entomology. University of Nebraska-Lincoln Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Available at: https://entomology.unl.edu/k12/crickets/temperature.htm (Accessed: June 2020).

Geggel, L. (2015) ‘Purring’ Wolf Spiders Softly Serenade Mates, Live Science. Available at: https://www.livescience.com/51006-wolf-spiders-vibrate-for-courtship.html (Accessed: June 2020).

What’s That Noise? Six Tell-Tale Signs of a Rodent Infestation (2018) PestWorld. The National Pest Management Association. Available at: https://www.pestworld.org/news-hub/press-releases/what-s-that-noise-six-tell-tale-signs-of-a-rodent-infestation/ (Accessed: June 2020).