Earwigs are small spindle like insects that resemble closely to worms. Though they are harmless their appearance strikes fear in any resident or homeowner. This is because earwigs also have tiny pincers that look like they could hurt. Not to worry though, earwigs don’t bite humans and are considered omnivores. The other fear that most homeowners have for earwigs is that they tend to crawl into their ears at night, hence the name earwig. Earwigs mostly come alive during the night time.
Earwigs aren’t poisonous and essentially harmless to humans. However, when it comes to the plant life and vegetation in your home, they can be quite a hazard. Earwigs feed on dead vegetation and also plants that you might have in your fridge and backyard. Any green produce left around in your home is just easy pickings for earwigs. This could be your lettuce, spinach etc that can be ruined by an earwig infestation.
Earwigs will attack your potted plants and the greens growing in your garden. They do have one benefit though, they feed on larvae of other pests and aphids.
Earwigs and Your Garden
In terms of controlling earwigs, you will need to set your focus on the outside of your home. Earwig populations tend to increase by vast numbers during the spring and summer seasons. In order to reduce their entry into your household, you will need to create clean, dry borders using stone or gravel around the wall of the foundation. You would then need to clear out all the commonplace hiding areas of earwigs. They usually dwell on climbing vines, weeds, thick mulches and vegetation as well as debris. They are known to take refuge under mulches in plant beds during the day, so it would be smarter to use smaller mulches to prevent earwig growth.
When it comes to indoors, you will have to take the precautionary measure of sealing all the cracks and crevices around your doors, windows and cable holes in walls. Opt to use store bought insecticides and apply them around the foundations, flowerbeds and the area within several yards of your home.
Earwig populations can be suppressed in the late spring seasons by targeting areas where they tend to congregate (the sites where females brood their young), such as damaged and eaten plants.
As stated above, earwigs come alive only during the evenings and night, so the best time to apply insecticides would be in the early evenings, when the earwigs come out to feed. The most effective of insecticides include permethrin, esfenvalerate, bifenthrin, pyrethrins, carbaryl, malathion, azadirachtin and diatomaceous earth. Use adequate amount of water during application to cover the plants and make sure to carry the chemical into the top layer of mulch and soil where the earwigs reside.
DIY Earwig repellants
If you don’t intend to spend or use insecticides to get rid of your earwig menace, there are natural alternatives to getting rid of them. You can use a spray consisting of water and dish soap. Just spraying this concoction on your plants and vegetation is enough to repel earwigs from your garden.
Similarly, you can create an alcohol based insecticide as well that can kill earwigs on contact. The trick is to mix equal parts of rubbing alcohol and water and fill in a spray bottle. Spraying this on your plants and vegetation will get you quick results and eradicate your earwig problem.
The reason why this combination is so effective is that rubbing alcohol and water can penetrate the hard exterior of earwigs, killing them in an instant.
For hard to reach places, you can use boric acid to eliminate the earwigs quickly. Boric acid is considered a natural insecticide and is lethal to many pests. Just sprinkle some boric acid along baseboards and other areas that earwigs dwell. Keep in mind that boric acid is quite dangerous to pets and infants so ensure they are far out of reach. You should consider sprinkling boric acid near damp areas and wood piles as they are common spots where earwigs dwell.
As Earwigs are not territorial creatures, you can find most of the earwigs in the same spot. This makes it easier to target and get rid of them. The last method which you can use, which is painstaking is to physically handle them. Crushing and killing pests is also a effective method but it leaves out a slight odd smell and a mess. You can easily differentiate male and female earwigs through the shape of its pincers. Female earwigs will have much straighter pincers while males have curved pincers.
Killing female earwigs is the key to prevent breeding, and that will drastically reduce your earwig infestation.
You can even make light based earwig traps to get rid of most of them at one go. Fill a bucket of water and one parts dish soap. Mix till the water becomes foamy and place it under a bright lamp outside at night. Since pests are attracted to bright lights, they will crawl up and drown in the dish soap water mix. This is really helpful in getting rid of most of the pests in your garden.
Calling in the Experts
If you feel that your earwig infestation has been rampants and all your plants and vegetation is being seriously affected, its time to call in a pest control agency. A pest control agency can help you get rid of pests in one clean swoop, albeit for a sum of money.
But now how do you know which is the right pest control agency for you? How do you know if the agency will take care of the particular pest that’s bothering you? Are they reliable? Will you have to call them multiple times to get rid of your pest problems?
Answering the questions above will be tiresome, especially if you’re looking for them on your own. That’s exactly why, you need to head on to PestControlRoom.com. Here you can find a database of the top pest control agencies in the United States. Each agency listed is reviewed by actual consumers and is given an appropriate rating.
Every pest control agency listed is presented with its prices, pests handled and other essential details about the company. Once you find the pest control agency of your liking, you can easily enough ask for a quotation and begin negotiating with the pest control agency, and be one step closer to a pest free home! Happy Hunting!