When you see a centipede crawling around your home, you may have concerns about a possible infestation. These insects are commonly seen in Chicago in the summer months when moisture levels are higher.
Fortunately, centipedes are usually not harmful to humans. In fact, they are beneficial insects. Still, a house centipede is a sign you have a pest insect infestation, not necessarily a centipede infestation. Read on to learn more about house centipedes, why they invade homes, and how to keep them away.
What Are Centipedes?
Centipedes are multi-legged predatory insects of various species. They have anywhere from 30 to 354 pairs of legs depending on the species. The ones you will likely see in your home or business in Chicago are house centipedes. They are yellowish-brown and slightly flattened. These insects scurry and disappear quickly, so you would rarely see them even if your home has several.
Why Do Centipedes Invade Homes?
Centipedes like homes with plenty of moisture and prey. They consume many other pest insects like spiders, roaches, silverfish, and termites. Because of their beneficial nature, many people advocate against killing them. While they generally avoid humans, they can end up in disturbing places like your bed.
Many people have concerns about centipedes because they are venomous. You may be apprehensive about potential bites to your family members and pets. However, their venom is only enough to affect their usual prey. Still, you wouldn’t want to get bitten as bites can cause a bee-like sting. Do not attempt to pick up or handle a centipede by hand if you see one.
Where Can One Find Centipedes in the Home?
Centipedes prefer to stay in areas with lots of moisture. If you have a basement, you will likely find them in that part of the house. They also like places with plenty of prey. In addition, you may find them outside in your garden or woodpile. They don’t consume vegetable matter, so your outdoor plants are safe. They may crawl around in the soil or climb plants in pursuit of their prey.
You could find them in other rooms, like your bedroom or bathroom, if your home tends to be on the humid side. They prefer dark places and will hide in bathroom cupboards or even under the bed. You won’t likely see them during the daylight hours, except in the early morning. Centipedes may hide in rooms infested with bed bugs and can crawl under bed covers and linens to get to them.
How Can One Keep Centipedes Away?
If you don’t want centipedes in your home, remove anything that could attract them. First, use a dehumidifier if you suffer from moisture problems in the home, even in the basement. Once the moisture is under control, get rid of the centipede’s food source. You can try non-chemical methods, sanitation, habitat modification, sealing, web removal, etc. for minor infestations of certain insects or spiders.
However, for large infestations of serious pests, like bed bugs, call in a professional pest control company. Pests like bed bugs won’t stay away with home remedies. Silverfish are also another pest that is difficult to control without professional help. The centipedes follow their prey and will go elsewhere if your house doesn’t have any. You can also eradicate the centipedes directly, but you still must take measures to keep them away.
Centipedes aren’t harmful to humans and are unlikely to cause problems like other household pests. However, you shouldn’t have to put up with them in your home. If you see centipedes often, call A-Alert Exterminating Service Inc for help. We can get rid of centipedes and the prey insects that draw them in. We work with both residential and commercial properties. Contact us today to get started.