What You Need to Know About Earwigs

Author: Kurt Treftz, Cascade Pest Control

While it is a species with a lot of unfounded fear behind it, earwigs are a household pest that people may not think of when it comes to pest control. They won’t crawl in your ears and lay eggs, despite what the name implies, nor have they been shown to cause any structural damage to spaces, but in large numbers they can be disconcerting and a possible threat to your garden. In this respect, it’s important to understand these insects & how to avoid them. Cascade Pest Control is here to help!

Earwig Habits & Characteristics

Earwig insectThe most notable descriptor of earwigs is their sizable pincher at the end of their abdomen. When combined with their spindly antennae and legs, they do have a strange look for a 5-25 mm critter. However, earwigs are relatively harmless to humans, as their pincher isn’t large enough to inflict any significant damage, and they are not aggressive unless startled or provoked.

Earwigs are also nocturnal, and enjoy damp, cool environments. During the day you might find them under a layer of topsoil outside, burrowed in a crack in the ground, or under other debris. They tend to feed on decaying or live plant matter that they can find, and some sub-species of earwigs feed on other small pests. In this respect, they tend to exist more outside since that’s where more viable food sources would be, but they can enter the home through baseboard gaps or door jams to find shelter. They can reproduce quite quickly, so during development particularly one can develop a larger population around the foundation.

Earwig Pest Control Recommendations

Given that they don’t feed on anything that your home or business would be made out of, there isn’t the risk of an earwig infestation harming the structure of your space. Even if a larger population arises, you’ll experience more of a filth or aesthetic disturbance as opposed to a damaging one. That being said, if conditions are right they could become a problem targeting your garden or lawn and cause damage there.

Because earwigs are attracted to moist conditions, it’s important to keep your space, particularly the dark areas that are less frequently visited, dry and debris free. This includes crawlspaces, attics, basements, and even around faucets and water pipes. It will also be helpful to caulk and seal any gaps in baseboards or frames to further impede their ability to enter your space to begin with. If you’re worried about your landscaping, creating a dry border or wall around your vegetation is helpful for earwig pest control.

As always, if you’re noticing an increased number of these insects crawling about, or you notice damage to your exterior, a professional pest control service will be able to support you in removing earwig colonies and preventing them from returning. Cascade Pest Control in particular is dedicated to a comprehensive pest control system tailored to your needs. We perform inspections and suggest treatment methods that align with your schedule and style.

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