Signs of an Earwig Problem
Most people have probably already seen an earwig; the problem, however, is just that they didn’t know that it was called an earwig. More likely, they knew it as the pincher bug, which is what most Americans call it.
What is an Earwig?
The earwig is a small, flat insect about a quarter of an inch to an inch in size that’s brown to black in color, with a forceps-shaped cerci that extends from the abdomen. Earwigs are common in the US and about 22 species of it can be found in the country.
Are Earwigs Harmful?
They are not as harmful to people as they are to plants; they bite, but only if you sit on them — and even then, their bite is not at all that painful. However, people tend to find them scary because of their weird appearance. It’s definitely freaky seeing them crawling out of your plants or any produce (they love beans, beets, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumbers, lettuce, peas, potatoes, tomatoes, corn, and strawberries) you have stored at home. Plus, pincher bugs, when disturbed, release a malodorous yellow-brown liquid – for sure, no homeowner wants that foul scent inside their home.
If you’re worried about an infestation, aside from the funky odor, here are other signs of an earwig problem in your home to watch out for.
- Indoor plants with leaves that obviously have bitten-off parts.
- Fresh flowers in vases on display that have damaged petals due to the eating habits of the insect.
- Fruits and vegetables in your kitchen that have black spots and holes in them.
Apparently, infestation should not be taken lightly because earwigs can pose considerable health risks, especially if people consume vegetables and fruits that the insects have eaten from. Likewise, don’t think that if you mostly find these infestation signs outside your home (perhaps in your garden), that earwigs won’t find their way inside; even if you install screens, these pincher bugs will be able to crawl through small holes easily.
So, what must you do? Get rid of piles of leaves, grass clippings and debris because pincher bugs like to nest in these. It will also help to minimize moisture inside your home by getting rid of plumbing issues (leaky pipes and faucets) because pincher bugs are attracted to water, too.
And to completely get rid of earwigs, there are pesticides that can quickly kill them off completely. Just make sure that they are applied in areas where the population is concentrated or where you’ve previously seen some. If you are still having issues with earwigs taking over your home, call the professionals at AAI Pest Control.