For many of us, the word earwig brings about images of this unsavory creature burrowing into our brains with its menacing looking pincers. While the superstition of these insects crawling into the ears of sleeping victims are completely unfounded, an infestation in your home is no joking matter.
Reports of earwig infestations have increased each year since 1970. They affect all areas in both the interior and exterior of homes. Elimination of these pests can be difficult and often proves temporary without professional assistance.
The professionals at All Clear Pest Control have over a decade of experience protecting homes in the East Valley. Call us today to get a tailored approach to meet your pest control needs around East Valley needs and keep earwigs at bay.
The most iconic feature of an earwig is their clawlike forceps. These pincers can make up as much as a third of the earwig’s total body length. While not a threat to humans, these pincers are used both as protective weapons and to capture prey.
Adult earwigs range from ⅝ to 1 inch in length and are a dark reddish brown color with a flat body. Most earwigs have short wing covers though they rarely take to the air.
Defense as Offense
It’s no secret that the best offense is often a good defense. One of the best ways to prevent an infestation of earwigs is to reduce factors that attract them in the first place. Large populations of earwigs will seek shelter in and around homes. This can create population explosions that invade everything from laundry and bedding to furniture and food stores.
Earwigs are active at night and hide during the day in dark, moist places. They can be found under boards, in tree holes, under bark and under other foliage. The first step in control is to eliminate breeding and nesting grounds.
Remove damp articles and debris from around home.
Clear leaves or grass clippings.
Keep mulch three or more feet from foundations.
Dry out moist areas.
Ensure crawl spaces are properly ventilated.
Block openings with screening or caulk.
Inside Your Home
While you don’t need to worry about earwigs climbing into your ear as you sleep, there is no reason to put up with them infiltrating your home. When earwigs are numerous outside of your home, invasion of the building is expected. This is even with the use of screens and other mechanical barriers. When preventative measures have failed, vacuuming can be used to eliminate limited, indoor populations.
Beyond that, both traps and insecticides can be used effectively. Traps can both control and monitor where you should focus your efforts. Boric acid and other insecticides can treat cracks, crevices and other difficult to reach areas. Remember that pesticides provide only temporary control. Furthermore, they can be hazardous if used incorrectly and may harm children or pests. To safely combat these pests, we recommend hiring a licensed professionals.
In the end, it is imperative to correct the conditions that have led to the infestation, or a reinfestation is bound to occur.
Outside Your Home
When combating an earwig infestation outside your home, physical traps and insecticides can be useful tools. Grooved board traps are most effective when set in shrubbery or in and around trees. They require tending either daily or twice daily by dropping the trapped earwigs into a can containing oil.
Exterior perimeter sprays such as deltamethrin, cyfluthrin and fipronil can be used to create boundaries around houses and other buildings. Spraying of these chemicals should be limited to outdoor use. Special attention should go to building foundations, fences, walks, wood piles and rocks. Always remember that pesticides are poisonous. Read and follow safety precautions closely. Make sure to take extra precautions around children, pets, and livestock. Also, take care to avoid contamination to foliage, streams, and ponds.
We Can Help
When earwigs have become a nuisance or worse – call us at All Clear Pest Control. We take pride in providing services to protect East Valley homes and businesses year-round from a wide variety of pest invaders. With over a decade of experience and 5 out of 5-star reviews, we are ready to meet your needs with a tailored approach and a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Call our local experts today to eliminate and prevent future infestations.