Your Quick Guide to Understanding Millipedes and Centipedes

Being a responsible homeowner means protecting your home and its residents against nasty visitors. Besides ensuring other people’s peace of mind, calling pest control to address your problems can also prevent severe health issues. 

Some common pests homeowners must watch out for are millipedes and centipedes. While they may not be insects, these critters are land-dwelling relatives of lobsters, crayfish, and shrimp. Millipedes can damage seedlings and enter homes in large numbers, while centipedes can bite and pose an occasional threat to humans. 

This article will help you understand centipedes and millipedes. We’ll also give you tips to control your creepy crawly problem. 

What Are Millipedes? 

Millipedes are small, segmented creatures with a few dozen to over a thousand legs. They possess roundish bodies and short antennae on their heads. 

They are usually brown or black and can be under an inch to over two inches long. Moreover, millipedes can easily climb walls and enter houses through small crevices near the foundation.

Are Millipedes Poisonous? 

While millipedes are not poisonous, their defensive sprays may have hydrochloric acid that can burn skin and cause discoloration. Never handle it barehanded, and thoroughly wash the affected area with soap and water. You can also use ether or alcohol to help remove the harmful fluid. 

What Are Centipedes? 

Centipedes are worm-like arthropods with one pair of legs on each body segment. They can also be one to 12 inches long and have light yellow to dark and reddish brown colors. Moreover, centipedes have distinct heads with long antennae and jaws with poison glands. 

What Are House Centipedes? 

The house centipede (Scutigera coleoptrata) can reproduce in homes and usually thrive in damp areas. While these nocturnal creatures can help homeowners control other household pests, many people fear their presence. 

What Do Centipedes Eat? 

Centipedes are predatory creatures that feed on small insects. They use their sharp jaws to capture their prey and inject it with venom to kill. 

Are Centipede Bites Venomous? 

While centipede bites may be painful for humans, they’re usually not as severe as bee stings. However, people allergic to insect venoms or other toxins may experience a more severe reaction. You can treat a centipede bite by washing the affected area with soap and water and applying ice or a cold, wet dressing. You can also take an analgesic for pain relief. 

What Are Their Life Cycles and Habits?

Millipedes usually eat decaying vegetation and leaf litter and overwinter in the soil. They lay 20 to 300 eggs in the ground, which will hatch after a few weeks. With each molt, they gain segments and legs until they reach sexual maturity, which takes two to five years. Moreover, they can migrate in large numbers after heavy rains or during cool weather. 

On the other hand, centipedes love dark, moist habitats. They lay eggs in the spring and summer. These creatures can also live up to six years and give birth to live young in some species. 

How to Control Your Centipede or Millipede Problems

Nobody wants to see these creatures in their home. Fortunately, you can do something about it. You can control your creepy crawly problem indoors by removing their potential hiding places and sealing all entry points. To manage their numbers temporarily, you can also apply pesticides in building foundations, doors, windows, flower beds, and turf areas. Never use it near flowering plants and pollinators because it can harm your plants. 

Moreover, you should use approved in-home products to treat cracks and crevices where these creatures can hide. Additionally, you can always call professional pest control. 

Creepy Crawly Solution for Your Home

Centipedes and millipedes can evoke fear in your home and cause health issues. You can enjoy a safer house by taking proactive measures and calling professional pest control. 

If you need professional pest control in Birmingham, call Magic City Pest Control! We’re committed to stomping out unwanted guests from your home to help you enjoy a pest-free tomorrow. Reach us now to get a quote!

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