Do you know what a house centipede looks like? If you live in Terre Haute, we bet you do. These are common pests in our service area. If you are new to the area, or you have not yet had to deal with these creepy pests, a house centipede is a tan-colored bug with dark stripes running down the length of its body and fifteen pairs of legs sticking out from the sides of its body. If you're seeing these bugs in your Terre Haute home, here is a quick guide to help you understand them and get control of them.
Centipedes And Pest Control
There are many centipede species in the world and all of them are carnivores. As carnivores, they can bite. Centipedes also inject venom into their prey with their poisonous jaws. But we have some good news for you. House centipedes rarely bite people. It may be that they know we are too big to subdue with their venom. Whatever their reasons are, it is nice to know that those ugly bugs aren't going to bite you while you're sleeping. But they'll be actively biting other critters while you sleep. These nocturnal hunters eat spiders, flies, and other insects. This can be a benefit. Unfortunately, the downside is that you have ugly bugs clinging to your walls, creeping across your floor at two in the morning, and surprising you in some of the most unlikely places. It is best to keep these bugs outside of your home.
The first step in getting control of a centipede problem is to consider what attracts centipedes to your yard and the interior of your home. This can be summed up in two words: food and moisture.
Food — The more bugs you have, the more interesting your yard and your home will be to centipedes. Everything you do to control pests will have a secondary impact on centipede populations.
Moisture — Centipedes hang out in moist locations because they require high humidity. If you have a damp exterior, you'll have more centipedes. If you have leaves piled near your home, you'll have more centipedes. If you have locations inside your home that are humid (you guessed it), you'll have more issues with centipedes. Everything you do to reduce moisture around the exterior of your home and on the interior of your home will impact centipede activity.
Tips for reducing moisture around your home:
- Clean gutters.
- Remove leaves and other debris.
- Trim landscape vegetation.
- Water plants in the morning.
Tips for reducing moisture inside your home:
- Be sure to run the fan when you take a shower or bath.
- Install fans in humid rooms that don't have exhaust fans.
- Install dehumidifiers in rooms that tend to be damp, such as basements and cellars.
- If you have a crawl space under your home, consider having it encapsulated.
Once you have addressed general pest activity and moisture issues around your home, it is time to consider possible entry points. The main reason centipedes get into your home is that they CAN get in. Centipedes can get into your home through:
- Gaps around your window and door frames.
- Openings around pipes that pass through the cement walls of your foundation.
- Gaps in weather stripping around your exterior doors, in particular, doors that enter into your basement. Double doors present a significant challenge to seal.
- Spaces underneath doors where door sweeps are damaged or missing.
- Weep holes in brick structures. These should have weep hole protectors.
- Damaged mortar around bricks and basement windows.
- Holes created by wood-destroying pests. This deserves its own section. Centipedes commonly get in this way because moisture causes wood rot, and rotting wood is attractive to mice, rats, carpenter ants, termites, and other pests that destroy wood. As centipedes seek out damp locations, they tend to run into these holes—quite literally.
How Action Pest Control Can Help
When it comes to getting control of all household pests, including centipedes, the best solution is to invest in residential pest control from Action Pest Control. It pays to have routine visits from a licensed and experienced pest management professional. Connect with us today and schedule a pest control inspection for your Terre Haute home. We'll help you figure out what you're up against and guide you toward the right solution.
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