Earwigs, order Dermaptera, are small insects that have a set of pinchers attached to their abdomen. While earwigs are not known for carrying diseases or having any harmful venom, it does hurt when you get pinched by one. If you suspect that your home is being invaded by these pests, there are a few steps you'll need to take before and after calling the exterminator.
Confirm the Earwig Infestation
The first thing you'll want to do is confirm that you actually do have an earwig infestation. Since earwigs are nocturnal, you'll need to do this at night. Cut a styrofoam cup so that it is half as tall as it originally was and fill it 3/4 of the way up with vegetable oil. Set it out on your porch or front walkway under some type of lighting. Earwigs are attracted to light as well as vegetable oil. When they enter the cup, they will drown in the vegetable oil, and you'll be able to see them the next morning.
Eliminate Hiding Places
Before you have the exterminator come out and rid your home of the existent earwigs, you need to locate and remove their hiding places so they have nowhere to run. This involves taking a walk around the foundation of your home and making sure you have no firewood, mulch, or shrubs leaning against the home. These areas are damp and moist areas that the earwigs love and can easily hide in. Seal any cracks in the foundation that the insects may be using to get inside and then double-check that the gutters and other water sources exit in the opposite direction of the foundation.
Request Bi-Annual Treatments
There are effective pest-control sprays that your exterminator can apply around the foundation of your home and in any crawl spaces that run under the house. The best time to do this is in early spring and again in early summer. If your area is known for having earwigs, you may want to set up a contract with the exterminator each year to treat your property for this pest problem. Contact an exterminator such as Quality Exterminators Of Georgia Inc to get going with regular treatments.
Fix Screens and Apply Weather Stripping
Once the earwigs have been eradicated, it is best to take a few extra steps to ensure future visitors don't enter your home. Since this most commonly happens through ground-floor windows, you'll want to examine your screens and fix any holes. Afterward, apply weather strips, which not only keep the bugs out but also help reduce your energy costs.