Earwig Identification

What are earwigs?

Earwigs are insects that are easy for most people to identify; they have a dark-reddish brown elongated body, long antennae, and pincers extending for their hind end. Many earwigs are winged, but most do not fly.

an earwig on a front porch

Earwigs are nocturnal, scavenging insects that hide during the day in dark, damp areas and come out at night to feed on small insects, insect larvae, and plants.

Are earwigs dangerous?

An earwig's appearance makes them seem like they would be dangerous, but the truth is that earwigs aren't harmful to people. 

An earwig's cerci (pincers) tend to startle people, but the pincers are not strong enough to pinch through our skin. They use their cerci mainly to defend themselves against each other and other insect predators. Earwigs do have biting mouthparts, but being bitten by an earwig is not a significant concern. 

The presence of earwigs is often an indicator of an underlying moisture problem. Things like leaky pipes, clogged gutters, and poor ventilation in your home may lead to issues with earwigs and other moisture-seeking pests.

Why do I have an earwig problem?

Often our yards provide earwigs with a perfect habitat — mulch, gardens, woodpiles, and yard debris provide the darkness and moisture they love. 

If it becomes too hot and dry outside for earwigs to live comfortably, they will migrate into the structure they live near.

Where will I find earwigs?

One place that you won't find earwigs is in the ears of people!

The name "earwig" originates from the old superstition that earwigs crawl into the ears of sleeping people to lay their eggs, but luckily this is completely untrue. Earwigs don't lay their eggs inside ears, but they do lay their eggs in damp soil. 

Earwigs often end up inside our houses because they like to live in the damp soil found around our foundations. 

Listed below are some areas in our yards where we tend to find earwigs gathering.

  • Under trash cans, recycling bins, and woodpiles

  • Under mulch in garden and flower beds

  • In wooded areas

  • Under flower pots

  • Under yard debris like leaf piles, brush piles, and fallen trees

When earwigs move into our homes, they usually gravitate to areas with high humidity levels or areas of excess moisture. Basements, bathrooms, crawl spaces, and kitchens are areas we regularly find these creepy, crawly pests.

When earwigs move into our homes, they are usually found in areas with high humidity levels or areas of excess moisture. Basements, bathrooms, crawl spaces, and kitchens are areas we regularly find these creepy, crawly pests.

How do I get rid of earwigs?

With over 25 years of experience in the pest control industry, Green Flash Pest Control will get rid of earwigs and other pests from California properties in a flash! We are a locally-owned, family-based company that takes protecting its community from unwanted pests seriously. Through our wide variety of pest control services, outstanding customer care, and guaranteed solutions, you can trust the dedicated professional at Green Flash Pest Control to rid your property of earwigs and keep them from returning! Give us a call today and speak with one of our helpful professionals to learn more about our residential and commercial pest control options!

How can I prevent earwigs in the future?

Taking the following steps will make your property less attractive to earwigs and help you avoid problems with these pests in your California home. 

  • Make sure screens placed inside windows and doors are intact.

  • Place weatherstripping around windows and doors and install door sweeps on exterior doors. 

  • Seal cracks in exterior walls and the foundation of your home. 

  • Because earwigs are attracted to humid environments, fix leaking plumbing pipes and fixtures.

  • Ensure that crawl spaces are well-ventilated.

  • Place outdoor lights on a timer to attract fewer earwigs to the outside of your house.

  • Discard decaying organic matter from your yard like grass clippings and leaf piles. 

  • Leave a barrier between any mulch and your foundation. 

  • Do not overwater your lawn or garden areas.

Learn more about our home pest control and commercial pest management options.

 

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