Richmond couple finds thousands of live crickets in Zara package: 'It was just bizarre'

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Posted at 3:51 PM, Feb 26, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-26 16:48:32-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Thousands of live crickets were delivered in a box to a shocked Richmond couple, along with a rug they ordered from the retailer Zara.

Greg DiNardo told CBS 6 his wife Lyanna ordered the rug which arrived on February 22.

When Lyanna opened the package and determined she did not like the rug, she went to put it back in the box but said she hesitated after she heard something coming from the package.

"She was like something's alive in here," Greg told CBS 6. "I was really confused. I came over to check the situation out. It was just bizarre. I didn't really know what to do."

After initially opening the package in their living room, the couple took the package outside to investigate further.

They called Zara and were put in touch with a representative from their customer service team.

"It was a very cold conversation. Obviously, they were just reading from a script," Greg said. "I'm assuming that the cricket situation probably wasn't on their script, so they didn't really know how to handle it."

The odd phone call with Zara left the DiNardos with no answers. Greg said the first representative hung up on them.

"We had to call back, and it's been over 24 hours now. And we haven't really heard from them since," Greg said.

Still confused with a box full of crickets, Greg said his next step was to call a Richmond-area pest expert from PermaTreat Pest and Termite Control in Hanover County.

The pest expert came to the DiNardo's home the next morning, and was shocked by what he saw, Greg said.

"He said he had never seen anything like it before," Greg said.

In a video posted to Greg's X account, the pest expert, named Steve, arrived to investigate what exactly was moving around and making sounds inside the package.

Two egg cartons were revealed, wrapped inside two mesh bags.

"Egg cartons are used a lot of time for breeding crickets," the expert said. "It keeps crickets alive."

In the video, the expert confirmed that crickets were inside the egg cartons.

"How many do you think are in there?" Greg asked. "Hundreds," he said. "Hundreds, maybe thousands."

The PermaTreat expert took the bags back to his office to figure out the origin of the crickets, and if they would have posed any harm to humans.

The DiNardos were left reeling and also - with the box that contained the rug they ordered.

Five days after Greg said he called Zara seeking answers, the company finally updated the couple and told them they would receive a refund for the rug, and that they were allowed to toss the item.

As for why the box even contained bags of crickets in the first place?

Zara did not tell them why, just that they are "in communication with their transportation and warehousing teams."

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