WHAT IS AN EARWIG?
Earwigs are characterized by the cerci, or the pair of forceps-like pincers on their abdomen; male earwigs have curved pincers, while females have straight ones. These pincers are used to capture prey, defend themselves and fold their wings under the short tegmina. Many earwig species display maternal care, which is uncommon among insects. Female earwigs are known to take care of their eggs, and even after they have hatched as nymphs will continue to watch over offspring until their second molt.
WHERE DO EARWIGS LIVE?
Earwigs are generally nocturnal, and typically hide in small, dark, and often moist areas in the daytime. When it gets too hot outside or if it drys up they can usually be seen patrolling household walls and ceilings. Interaction with earwigs at this time results in a defensive free-fall to the ground followed by a scramble to a nearby cleft or crevice. They can be found around damp areas such as near sinks and in bathrooms and even in coffee makers. Earwigs tend to gather in shady cracks or openings or anywhere that they can remain concealed during daylight. Picnic tables, compost and waste bins, patios, lawn furniture, window frames, or anything with minute spaces can potentially harbor them.
WHAT DO EARWIGS EAT?
The common earwig is one of the few insects that actively hunt for food and are omnivorous, eating arthropods, plants, and ripe fruit. They are also known to eat mosses, algae, fungi, insects, spiders and mites both dead and alive. To a large extent, this species is also a scavenger, feeding on decaying plant and animal matter if given the chance. They can also eat plants in gardens, such as vegetable, fruits and ornamentals.
OTHER RANDOM FACTS ABOUT EARWIGS:
The forceps at the end of the abdomen are used to defend the nest, capture prey, probe narrow crevices and fold and unfold wings. The name “earwig” is derived from a European superstition that these insects entered the ears of a sleeping person and bored into the brain. This has been found to be just a superstition.
Earwigs are attracted to moisture and damp conditions. First thing you will need to do is get rid of their hiding places, such as mulch, compost and woodpiles. Keep grass and weeds mowed short around the house foundation, and reduce lighting around doors or other possible entry points. Use caulking and weather stripping around doors, windows, pipes and other places especially at the ground level.
Call Sergio’s Pest Control today to schedule an expert technician to come out to your home for an inspection and treatment. 248-932-0018