Earwigs are unusual-looking insects that have pincers that protrude from their abdomen. Their size
usually depends on the species, but generally, most earwigs run between 6-25 mm in length. Earwigs
are a nasty little bug and are very unpleasant when encountered.
Earwigs have three parts to their body, six legs, and two antennae. In addition to their nasty pincers,
earwigs have membranous wings that they fold under another pair of forewings. The nymph phase of
earwigs, when immature, does not have any wings.
Earwigs are not poisonous, nor do they spread disease. However, when encountered, they are startling
and intimidating. Earwigs prefer cool, wet areas that are undisturbed, and if found in the garden they
can become a severe problem. If there is sufficient ground cover, moist soil, and food, they will thrive
There is one main principle to remember when looking to prevent earwigs from taking up residence in
your home—earwigs like moisture. Making sure to remove or reduce any source of moisture both
outside of and inside of your home will go a long way to preventing them.
There are other suggestions for preventing earwigs that may prove helpful as well
• Thoroughly examine the outer foundation and walls of your home. Be sure to seal up any
visible cracks, holes, or gaps that you may find. Until you can have the job done professionally,
you can use liquid cement or caulking for a short-term fix. This method will not only aid in
keeping earwigs out of your home but offers the advantage of keeping other pests out as well.
• Inspect the perimeter of your property and reduce any areas of moisture. Take special notice of
any lawn items that may house moisture underneath—those items such as woodpiles, leaf
piles, and various construction piles.
• Keep any vegetation around your home adequately trimmed back. Consider placing any mulch
beds with a dry material.
• To resolve any severe problems, seek out the services of a professional pest control service.
• To aid in reducing moisture in the home, use fans and humidifiers. If earwigs attempt to take
up residence in your home, they will find the dry environment unwelcome.
Keep in mind that there are some methods for preventing earwigs that are ineffective
• Although sticky tape may catch some earwigs present, it will not be effective with an infestation.
• Like the sticky tape, earwig traps may trap some, but they will be very minimal.
• Some believe that ridding your yard of plants will deter earwigs. However, this is not necessarily
true, and you will still have pesky bugs hanging around.
• Sprays that kill on contact may be somewhat effective against the earwigs that you see. They
are not very effective against those in your walls or under cabinets and fixtures.
Although there are methods for preventing earwigs in your home, if you feel you do have an infestation,
you are better off seeking the services of a professional pest control company to take care of the
AANTEX Pest Control offers a variety of free inspections and services to the entire Bay Area. 1-800-471-5555