With 15 pairs of legs and antennae sticking out of both ends, a centipede scurrying across the kitchen floor is an unnerving sight. It also makes you wonder what this unusual insect is doing there and what it wants. Here is an explanation of why centipedes enter your home and how to get rid of pests that attract them.
The number one reason centipedes come indoors is to find food. However, unlike other insect pests such as cockroaches and ants, centipedes have no interest in your leftovers and crumbs. Instead, these tiny predators are seeking live prey such as the following:
While centipedes may seem scary, having them inside your house is not a serious problem. They do not carry diseases, do not attack people, and do not even smell bad. Seeing centipedes indoors is simply a sign that you have an infestation of some other type of arthropod. Once you have used commercial pest control to address the real problem, the centipedes will leave on their own accord.
Centipedes also require moisture to survive and will die if they dry out. Thus, you will usually find them in parts of your yard where the sun does not shine directly. If you have a lot of moisture around the foundation of your house, then centipedes may congregate there. Compost bins are also a major attractant because decaying food scraps create the perfect microclimate for them.
Once inside, they will seek out dark and moist corners to hide during the day. If you are in the habit of leaving wet towels on the laundry room floor overnight, don’t be surprised to see a centipede run out when you pick them up the next day. They also hide in places such as cracks in the floor near leaky bathroom fixtures or under the kitchen sink. To make your home less hospitable, consider installing a dehumidifier to dry out the air.
Warmth and Safety
Of all the types of centipedes in Canada, the house centipede (Scutigera coleoptrata) is the one that makes itself at home indoors in Toronto. They are not native Canadians, but instead, trace their ancestry to the warm and humid Mediterranean region. Since 1849, they have managed to survive in North America by spending the cold winters inside heated human homes.
Human dwellings also keep centipedes safe from larger animals such as birds and reptiles that might eat them. When seeking out safe hiding places, they may crawl into crevices along a home’s foundation. From there, they may accidentally enter through tiny openings and make themselves at home indoors.
No matter how appealing your house may appear to centipedes, they cannot come in if there are no openings for them. They cannot simply pass through walls, and they are not like dogs that follow people in through the front door. They instead require the presence of small openings at ground level.
Inspecting the outside of your home regularly can help you detect potential entry points. However, these long and skinny insects find a way to slip through the tiniest cracks imaginable. This is why it is sometimes necessary to call on professional pest control services in Toronto to evaluate your situation.
Truly Nolen Pest Control in Toronto
If you regularly see centipedes inside your house, you need to investigate what other insect pest is serving as a food source for them. Our Truly Nolen team in Toronto will identify the root of your problem and offer treatment options that work for your family during all seasons of the year. Fill out our online form or call us to schedule a home inspection today.