Coming into contact with an earwig can be a frightening experience. Their long bodies and scary pincers can look prehistoric, pointing to the age of their order, which first showed up in the fossil record nearly 208 million years ago. Despite their appearance, earwigs are not actually dangerous to humans. They may use their pincers to latch onto a finger if they are bothered or threatened, but earwigs do not sting, and they do not have any venom. Earwigs may occasionally crawl into a human ear, but the claims that they lay eggs inside the human body are false.
Earwigs live almost everywhere in the United States and Europe. They can be found in small farms and big cities. They can exist in most climates, but despite their large range, it is rare for them to come into contact with humans. Earwigs are nocturnal, coming out during the dark hours to feed on other insects or foliage. When they aren’t out feeding, earwigs spend their time in small crevices or debris, such as fallen trees or logs.
There is some debate when it comes to the relationship between earwigs and crops. Earwigs aren’t choosy when it comes to their food. They will eat other insects that prey on crops, and they’ll eat the crops themselves. Even though earwigs may feed on crops such as corn and apricots, it would take a large infestation to cause substantial financial loss.
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Earwigs can become an unwanted nuisance for homeowners. These insects are attracted to light and may group around porch lights during the night. Earwigs are also attracted to water and can get into homes. Luckily, there are several things that can be done to prevent earwigs from entering houses.
Earwigs and other insects are attracted to tiny spaces made of natural materials. Moving such things from around the home can keep earwigs away. Moving logs, timber, and decorative stones away from the foundation of a house will minimize the chances that an earwig will find its way into a home. Earwigs are also attracted to dead foliage. Creating an empty space free of dead foliage and mulch of at least a foot around the house will keep earwigs uninterested in the tiny cracks they use to enter a dwelling.
Keeping a home dry will also keep earwigs at bay. Proper drainage in basements and running a dehumidifier in damp spaces will eliminate the type of environment earwigs are attracted to. Still, even if these precautions are taken, earwigs may still infest any area of the home. When this happens, insecticides may be needed, and it is best to contact us to eliminate an infestation of these pesky bugs.