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Earwigs

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What do earwigs look like?

While you may know them as a “pincher bug”, earwigs are an insect easily recognized by their long, smooth bodies and pair of appendages at the tip of their abdomen called “cerci”. Pincer-like in appearance, the cerci are fairly straight on female earwigs and tend to be more curved on the male of the species.

The common earwig is about 5/8 of an inch long, although they have been known to grow larger. They are dark brown to reddish-brown in color and occur as winged and wingless insects. Their name comes from the old myth that these insects would enter human ears, burrow into the brain and lay their eggs.

 

earwigs in colorado

When are earwigs most active?

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Are earwigs dangerous?

Nope, not really. They might try to pinch if threatened, but not really considered to be dangerous to humans or pets. They are nuisance pests that are typically found in basements and other cool, damp areas. 

Why do I have an earwig problem?

Earwigs are typically outdoor insects and are found in damp areas. They will, however, migrate indoors if the temperature climbs or if there is a lack of moisture present.

As nocturnal insects, they normally congregate in areas that are dark and humid during the day. Typical indoor hiding places are under rugs or potted plants, in stacks of newspapers and similar locations. During the night they will come out to feed on decaying plant material as well as other insects, including fleas and mites.

Occasionally, earwigs may be brought inside with the morning newspaper, lawn furniture, or other outside items that they were resting beneath.

How do you get rid of earwigs?

If you are having problems with earwigs in your home, EnviroPest can help. Available in Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Loveland as well as throughout NoCo, our home pest control program targets household pests including earwigs. 

How do I prevent earwigs?

The best way to prevent an earwig problem is to keep these pests out by fortifying the exterior of your home. We recommend:

  • Sealing any cracks and crevices found in your home’s foundation
  • Caulking gaps around exterior windows and doors
  • Repairing any damage to siding or roof shingles.
  • Trimming trees or shrubs so that they don’t touch the exterior of your home or building.
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