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Centipede Control in New Jersey

Even among insects, centipedes can be particularly unsettling and alien. Their strange, flat bodies, namesake overabundance of long, spindly legs, and the wormlike way they dart around a house. When you see one scurry across your floor, it can frighten you.

However, unlike their southern cousins, the most common species of centipede found in American homes are mostly harmless and may even be beneficial under certain conditions. Nonetheless, the emotional impact of a centipede infestation in your home or business is reason enough to apply centipede control measures.

Getting Rid of Centipedes in New Jersey?
Centipede Control in New Jersey

What Exactly Are Centipedes, and How to Recognize Them?

Centipedes are arthropods, which are creatures with an exoskeleton, segmented bodies, and jointed legs. These pests have elongated bodies that resemble worms with legs. They also have long antennae that they use to help them locate prey.

The term centipede literally means “100 legs,” but house centipedes can have only up to 15 pairs of legs depending on the number of body segments.

Other centipedes can have up to 177 pairs of legs, one for each body segment; however, you’ll never see a centipede with 100 legs because they always have an odd number of pairs.

They can grow up to 1.5 inches long, and their color can range from brown, grey, and dark “dirty” yellow to semi-translucent.

Centipedes in NJ

The centipede that gets into homes in our area is appropriately named the house centipede. The house centipede has longer, bushier-looking legs than the regular centipede. The regular centipede is narrower and can be found outside in gardens and along foundations but rarely inside your home or business.

Even though they look frightening, centipedes are not actually that dangerous. They are mostly categorized as a “nuisance pest.” They possess poisonous jaws but are not strong enough to pierce human skin. Instead, they use their jaws to inject venom and kill their prey.

However, on rare occasions, house centipedes will bite in self-defense, which can result in some localized pain and swelling similar to a bee sting in that it may cause minor discomfort but should not result in permanent damage.

Characteristics of the House Centipede

Centipedes are tenacious hunters that prey on a wide variety of insects. They feed on spiders and smaller arthropods such as silverfish, sowbugs, millipedes, roaches, fly larvae, beetles, and so on. So, a centipede living in your home may be assisting you in keeping pests at bay. In addition, unlike many other pests, the house centipede rarely bites humans.

Centipedes require a lot of moisture to live. They frequently enter homes during the warm months of the year to avoid the drying effects of the sun and when there is little or no rain outside. If you have entry points, these bugs will quickly take advantage of them. When they get in, they will be drawn to humid areas of your home, such as your bathrooms, cellar, or basement.

House centipedes, unlike most centipedes, reproduce indoors. They prefer to lay their eggs in humid environments, and their reproduction takes place in the early to mid-spring.

Centipedes may remain inside for some time once they have entered. They typically have a lifespan of at least a year and have even been known to live up to six years.

Indications of a Centipede Infestation

They do not eat or tunnel through wood like termites or feed on the materials used to make your belongings. So, as long as you don’t see one, you won’t be able to see signs of their infestation.

The simplest way to detect a centipede infestation is to discover them beneath an object they were using as shelter. House centipedes spend the day hiding in dark, humid places and emerge at night.

They will flee to the nearest dark cover if they are deprived of their cover. They’re common in bathrooms and boiler rooms, especially late at night. Finding a house centipede may also indicate the presence of a nearby plumbing leak.

Centipede Control and Prevention Tips

Centipedes are looking for two things: food and moisture. If you have a nice damp basement or garage with a lot of spiders or other prey, centipedes will most likely move in as well.

So, the main things to watch out for are other pests that can become centipede prey, as well as humidity. Here are some tips that could help keep centipedes out:

  • Find any entry points that spiders, beetles, roaches, or other tiny centipede prey could use to enter your building and seal them off.
  • Look for plumbing leaks and clean up any water and water damage that you find. When it is too hot or dry outside, centipedes will seek shelter. Keeping interior moisture to a minimum helps to keep centipedes at bay.
  • Trim tree branches to remove densely shaded areas.
  • Make certain that all food waste is properly disposed of.
  • Leave space between your plants to ensure adequate airflow. This will help to dry things out after you’ve finished watering your plants.
  • Move objects away from the sides of your house and keep your yard clean and free of debris, particularly stacks of wood, rocks, and leaf piles.

Centipedes may still be hiding in your home regardless of how hard you work. When looking for them, pay special attention to dark, damp areas like attics, crawl spaces, closets, basements, and laundry rooms.

If you start seeing centipedes on a regular basis or in large groups, it could be a sign of a larger pest problem. Centipedes are solitary creatures that do not build nests in human homes. Excessive centipedes are a sure sign that it’s time to call the exterminator.

Local Pest Control Experts – Titan Pest Services at Your Service

If all else fails, hiring a pest control specialist is the best option when dealing with an infestation.

As Titan Pest Services, we provide commercial and residential pest control services. Our clients include single-family homes, residential condominium complexes, luxury hotels, athletic stadiums, airports, food establishments, and other businesses.

Please contact us if you have any questions or need assistance keeping your home pest-free!