Earwigs frighten many people because of superstitions about how they crawl into the ears of people while they sleep. Fortunately, this is just a common misconception and it almost never happens. They also seem frightening because of the pincers on their abdomens, but they only use them for self-defense. This is also why they’re known as pincher bugs. There are 22 different types of earwigs in the United States and more than 1,000 species all over the world. Here is some basic information about earwig control.
Their size depends on the species, but they usually vary from 5-25 mm. These slender insects have two pairs of wings, two antennae, six legs, and membranous wings. They’re usually dark brown, black, or yellow in color. Their bodies are long and flat and divided into three sections. Some species produce a yellow-brown smelly liquid they use for defense.
Earwig Behavior and Diet
Earwigs are omnivores and they tend to eat at night. They eat plant matter like leaves, flowers, fruit, and mold, and they also don’t mind if their dinner is alive. They are able to chew, so they can eat other insects. Since they’re active at night, they hide in cracks during the day. Usually, they’re found under piles of lawn clippings and compost or in tree holes. Moist and dark places are their favorite habitats. These pests are attracted to light, so you can find them on porches and patios on summer evenings. An earwig comes to the world as one of 30 to 50 eggs that hatch within two weeks. Females are capable of producing one to two litters per year. After hatching, earwigs develop in a series of five stages and the mother actually guards the eggs.
Signs of an Earwig Infestation
Earwigs are pests since they can invade your property easily. Also, they reproduce really fast, so they can present a problem. Homeowners often find them in areas where there is water, like bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms, but they can infest many different areas in a home. When you start to notice them in large numbers inside and outside, that means that they’ve managed to spread all over your household. Since proper earwig control requires expert knowledge, you should contact a professional to deal with these pests.
How to Get Rid of Earwigs
You can also exercise your own earwig control to prevent them from entering your home. The most important thing is to eliminate their hiding places, like decorative stone, logs, dead leaves, and other organic matter piles. Trim trees and shrubs that cause shady areas near your house. You’ll also need to adjust your outdoor light to shine from the yard onto the house. Another solution is to replace white bulbs with yellow since white light is more attractive to all insects. To prevent them from entering your home, seal all cracks and holes along with utilizing other proactive pest control measures.
Proudly serving the greater Chicagoland area in Illinois and southeast Wisconsin, the professional exterminators at Aerex Pest Control understand the habits of earwigs and use that knowledge when developing an earwig control program that is best suited to your home and your particular problem. Our technicians are professional, state certified, licensed applicators. Call today for your free consultation 847-255-8888 or click here for a free quick quote.