What's Attracting Centipedes To My Conroe Home?
When you find a centipede in your house, how concerned should you be? First, it depends on the centipede. The small, tan centipedes are house centipedes, and they pose little or no threat to you. They're just super creepy. The large centipedes are in the order Scolopendra heroes, and they go by several names, all of which have the word "giant" in them: Giant desert centipedes, giant redheaded centipedes, and giant Sonoran centipedes. As you can probably guess, these are large critters. The average size of a Scolopendra heros centipede is about 6 1/2 inches. If you find one of these in your home, we advise caution.
Other factors to consider are: How many of them are you seeing, and how often are you seeing them? Join us today as we discuss common centipedes found in Conroe, the risk of having them in your home, what attracts them, and what works to get rid of them. In this simple guide, you'll find everything you need to know about these Texas centipedes and how to control them.
If you need immediate help, remember that your Modern Pest Control team is here for you. Request professional pest control in Conroe by going to our Contact Us page. We have the solutions for all your pest problems.
Centipedes 101: Biology, Behaviors, And Hazards
Welcome class. Don't worry; this won't feel like a college-level course on centipedes. We're not going to get into all of the technician details that would cause you to fall asleep on your desk and leave a little drool on your arm. We'll keep our focus only on the facts that relate to centipede prevention, control, and risk mitigation.
House Centipedes: These tan, multi-legged critters are a common sight in Conroe homes. That is why they have the word "house" in their name. But they can't live in any ol' house. If your place is dry, and there are no insects for a centipede to eat, you may find a dead centipede on your floor every once in a while. That is actually a great sign. It means your home is not a suitable environment. It does, however, mean that you have entry points allowing pests to enter your home.
Here are a few more facts that are helpful to know about house centipedes and pest control:
- Adult house centipedes are about 1 to 1 1/2 inches long and have 15 pairs of legs that encircle the bug. When you add the length of the antennae and the long rear legs of a female centipede, the females are 3 to 4 inches. It's not a pretty sight, clinging to your wall.
- Do centipedes bite? A house centipede can bite you, but it is highly unlikely. These bugs are mostly docile toward humans, even when handled, and they prefer to flee if possible.
- If a centipede bites you, the bite will likely be minor. You'll get a raised welt that itches. It is not unlike a bite from most other bugs.
- Unlike bites from other bugs, centipedes do not transmit disease or spread harmful bacteria.
- With a house centipede bite, you won't have any localized pain.
- Centipedes prefer humid areas, so you'll most likely find them in your basement or bathroom.
- If you frequently see centipedes in your home, it indicates that you have other pests, like cockroaches or silverfish. While it is nice that centipedes eat those pests, we don't recommend letting centipedes handle your pest control for you. It is better to get rid of all the pests.
- Females house centipedes sometimes survive several years if conditions permit, and they can have as many as 150 offspring.
- House centipedes prefer nocturnal activity and hide from sight during the day.
Giant Centipedes: These startling pests will sometimes enter Conroe homes, but sightings are rare. When encountered, residents quickly discover that giant centipedes are no joke. They are strong and formidable. If hungry, a giant centipede can also be aggressive. They won't take lightly to you attempting to scare them off with a broom
Here are a few more quick facts you should know:
- Adult giant centipedes grow longer than 6 inches. They typically have yellow legs and may have a red head, but you don't need these descriptions to identify one. They're big and scary.
- You can find this species anywhere and at any time, but they prefer humid or damp areas.
- They live under rocks, and the females lay their eggs under rocks and curl around them for several days or weeks until the eggs hatch. Use caution when flipping things over in your yard.
- A giant centipede can bite, and when it does, there is intense localized pain.
- The effects of the venom can vary, even within the same species. You may only have intense pain, or you could have a range of flu-like or medical symptoms. Check out medical resources on the topic for more information.
- Centipedes sting you with their front two appendages, but all of their appendages can inflict a sting. They're all attached to venom sacs.
Okay. You have a few basic facts. You can answer questions like, "Where do centipedes live, and can centipedes hurt you?" That is a good start. Now, let's shift gears and look at what conditions attract centipedes to your yard and how they find their way into your home.
Mistakes Conroe Homeowners Make To Attract Centipedes
When centipedes wander into your yard, they're going to look for conditions that are favorable. They're going to do what comes naturally, and there are mistakes you can make that will invite centipedes to your yard and into your home.
Here are some examples:
- If you leave leaf piles or leaf litter, you'll provide a desirable harborage location for these critters. They're looking for dark, damp places to hide.
- If you let your gutter get clogged, the overflow of water can dampen the soil near your foundation and invite centipedes to come close.
- If you don't have proper drainage, wet conditions can lure centipedes.
- If you stack campfire wood next to your home or stack sticks against your foundation wall, you can have centipedes come close and get inside.
- If you overwater the plants in your vegetation, you can create desirable moisture levels for centipedes.
- If you lay down too much mulch, centipedes will slide under that thick layer of mulch to hide from the hot sun.
- If you don't trim your landscaping, you'll give centipedes dark and humid places to hide.
- If you don't stay on top of pest control around your home, you'll provide a food source for centipedes.
- If you don't keep up with sealing cracks in your foundation, patching gaps around pipes, and weatherproofing your doors, centipedes can slip into your home uninvited.
- If you have cluttered indoor spaces, centipedes will have lots of places to hide, and they'll feel safe inside your house.
- If you have indoor pests, centipedes will have the food they need to establish themselves inside your home.
- If you have high humidity or damp areas within your house, centipedes will do well inside your home. A common trouble spot is the bathroom. Homes with jetted tubs can have even more trouble, particularly when you leave the water in the tub.
Do you see a few themes in the warnings listed here? Dark places, humidity, damp conditions, cracks in your exterior, and the presence of food are the factors you have to manage. Now that you understand these basic attractants, you can start to answer the following question.
How Can I Prevent Centipedes In My House?
When people try to keep centipedes away, they often turn to pest control products, such as house centipede repellent. While control products seem to offer a simple solution, they rarely deliver on their promises. Repellents aren't the solution; centipedes will just go around them. The key to control is counteracting the natural behavior of centipedes.
Try these solutions:
- Remove hiding places. Rake leaves up, store sticks in a bin, move stacked stones away from your exterior, stack wood on an elevated platform, trim vegetation, and remove weeds. Put storage items in a shed, indoors, or off your property.
- Reduce exterior moisture. Clean your gutters, make repairs if needed, fix pipes, water your landscaping in the early morning, and apply drainage.
- Seal potential entry points in your exterior. Apply mortar to patch your foundation. Insert expanding foam into gaps, structural cavities, and wood holes. Swap out old weatherstripping or sweeps. Repair all of the screens on your home. Make sure all vents are covered. If your home has weep holes, make sure you have weep hole protectors installed. Make sure the sweep on your garage door has a good seal.
- Reduce insect populations in your yard. Install lights that detect motion and only come on when they're needed. Keep your trash receptacle clean and covered. Bag your trash in scented bags before storing them in your exterior containers. If you have compost, make sure to mix it up properly. Address weeds in your landscaping to remove sources of nectar and plant sap. Quickly address aphids, white flies, and other plant-damaging insects that leave honeydew on the plants in your landscaping.
- Consider the humidity levels inside your home. Install a dehumidifier if needed. Install ventilation and fans in areas that stay humid. Use your bathroom fan when you take a shower or bath. Repair any plumbing issues within your home.
- Reduce insect populations indoors. Clean and deep clean routinely. Keep your kitchen trash covered. Consider using a smaller trash bin in your kitchen so you'll have to remove the trash more frequently, preventing food from sitting and decaying. Keep lights off in entryways until you need them so insects don't try to fly right in. Keep exterior trash away from your exterior doors to keep insects from flying inside.
These tips will get you on the right path. As with the list of attractants, these prevention tips are only the start. Use them as a guide to consider all the many unique ways you can reduce centipedes and block them from accessing your home.
Why Ongoing Pest Control Is The Best Prevention For Centipedes
Centipedes want to live where food is available. If your home is free of pest activity, centipedes won't want to live with you and will regret it if they try. A home pest control plan can help you maintain a pest-free home. When you have a plan in place, like Modern Plus, Signature, or Signature Plus, from Modern Pest Control, you get routine perimeter treatments that work to keep a long list of pests out of your home, including centipedes.
Your residential pest control plan also comes with pest maintenance around your home. We spot-treat key areas to manage pest populations next to your home. When centipedes come into your yard looking for food options, they will be disappointed. We also remove spider webs and spider egg sacs to keep spiders to a minimum. While we don't get rid of all of the food, we limit the availability of food sources, which helps to deter centipedes.
Along with controlling the insects centipedes eat, we also directly manage some of the attractants that make them want to live near you, and we give you advice regarding certain factors you can alter if you choose.
On top of using control materials and pest maintenance, we also apply pest-proofing in key areas. We've found that a little exclusion work can go a long way toward keeping pests out.
Are you in Conroe? Why not contact Modern Pest Control for centipede control near you? We can provide you with a one-time service to target and remove centipedes from your home or give you long-lasting, ongoing pest control for your home.
Call, text, or email us for details about our residential and commercial pest control services in Conroe. We look forward to helping you say good riddance to centipedes for good.