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What are earwigs?

close up on an earwig resting on a leaf

Earwigs are small, elongated insects, dark brown to blackish, with an antenna measuring about half their total body length and six legs. These scavenging, nocturnal creatures can grow up to an inch and a half long and can be either with wings or wingless, depending upon the species. 

Their life-cycle consists of three stages. That includes the egg, nymph, and adult. Earwigs lay eggs by burrowing deep in the ground in early spring after hibernating throughout the winter. 

A female earwig can lay about 60 eggs, and it takes seven days for nymphs to hatch. 

The nymphs typically molt up about four to six times over a period of 70 days before reaching maturity and becoming full-grown adults. Each molt stage a nymph goes through is known as an instar. 

Earwigs are scavengers, feeding on decaying plant matter like composting leaves. They also eat tiny insects and usually remain hidden during the day in dark and cool places like dense vegetation, shrubbery, wood piles, etc. However, hot and dry conditions can drive them indoors, where they settle in moist, cool areas like the bathroom or basement. 

This pest library page: earwigs, will tell you everything you need to know about these creatures!

Are earwigs dangerous?

Despite their frightening appearance, earwigs are harmless insects to humans and animals. They might use their pincers to pinch if picked up and threatened. The bite is painless and causes no significant discomfort. 

Earwigs primarily live outdoors, where they might feed on seedlings, certain flowers, and soft fruit and vegetables. Once inside, earwigs are unlikely to be of much concern as they will remain hidden most of the time. In addition, not many food sources are attractive to them except certain fruits and vegetables.

Why do I have an earwig problem?

Like most other pests, earwigs are mainly attracted to food, water, and shelter. Therefore, they will likely invade homes with a moist environment, such as damp soil, dead leaves, or rotting organic matter. A yard with food sources like fruits, decaying leaves, and insects will also attract these insects as it serves as a favorable environment for them to thrive.

Earwigs also make their way indoors in extreme heat or cold. Moist areas with clutter are hotspots for earwigs to infest, such as potted plants, basements with nesting materials like cardboard boxes, and other messy storage areas.

Where will I find earwigs?

As stated earlier, earwigs mainly prefer living outdoors and remain hidden during the day under moist areas like leaf piles, mulch, piles of firewood, or other yard debris.

However, they may be brought indoors unknowingly through piles of newspapers, boxes, plants, etc. 

When conditions become harsh outdoors, such as when temperatures soar and it becomes increasingly humid and dry, earwigs often seek shelter indoors. They will seek refuge in secluded dark, moist, and cluttered areas like the basement, attic, and crawl spaces.

How do I get rid of earwigs?

The most reliable and effective method to banish earwigs from your house is with the help of a professional pest control company

At Phenom Pest Control, we offer customized and guaranteed pest control solutions to protect your property from these unwelcome guests. Our technicians are highly trained and possess the knowledge, skills, and experience to combat the problem, no matter how big or complex, as manifested in our high ratings by our valued customers. 

To learn more about our effective earwig control services, call Phenom Pest Protection today!

How can I prevent earwigs in the future?

Several prevention measures can help keep earwigs out of your home for the time to come. As an earwig infestation typically starts outdoors, maintaining your yard is the first and most crucial step. 

That includes eliminating rotting vegetation like dying leaves, moving piles of wood away from the house, and clearing away other yard debris that serves as a hiding spot. 

Earwigs are drawn to moisture; therefore, it is vital to make conditions inhospitable for them by ensuring there are no clogged gutters, not overwatering your yard, and removing objects where water may accumulate, like empty flower pots. 

You must also check for cracks, crevices, and holes, such as in the foundation, and seal them to prevent access. Also, check if there are any poorly sealed window frames or doors. 

Installing a dehumidifier indoors where excess moisture may gather can also deter these insects from entering the home during hot and dry weather.

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Phenom Pest Protection received an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars from 354 reviews.


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