These Venomous Pests Are Ecologically Beneficial
October 18, 2017
Centipedes can be found all throughout the world, and can thrive in almost any climate, although they prefer areas consisting of high moisture and humidity. Rotting logs and beneath piles of rotting leaves and lawn debris are some of their favorite places to hide. Since centipedes are drawn to moisture, they are most likely to hide in places in your home that accumulate moisture, like basements, bathrooms, and kitchens.
Many species of centipede scavenge along forest floors where there is plenty of decomposing plant and leaf matter. Centipedes are nocturnal, which means that they spend the daylight hours under whatever shelter they can find, and spend the night hunting for food.
Centipedes are carnivorous insects that prey on other, smaller insects, which they inject with venom and then devour. In general terms, centipede venom can be aggravating to humans, but it’s very rarely lethal. These insects prey on worms, spiders, slugs, and all manner of other small insects, depending on their habitat. In the wild, these pests are preyed upon by birds, frogs, shrews, and some spiders.
The kinds of centipedes most commonly found in households are usually no more than five centimeters long with 15 pairs of legs. These insects come in a variety of colors including pale yellow, reddish, and deep brown, depending on their species. Centipedes have a hard exoskeleton and no vertebrae, but they need to constantly stay around moisture so that they don’t dry out. These insects lose water very quickly because they lack the waxy coating over their exoskeletons that many other insect species enjoy.
Female centipedes have the ability to lay up to 60 eggs at a time. The female centipedes will stay with the eggs until they hatch in order to protect them from predators and invasive fungi. If the nesting site is disturbed before the eggs have a chance to hatch, the female will either abandon the eggs or, in some cases, eat them.
Centipedes have unusually long lifespans for insects, and sometimes take up to three years to reach adulthood. In the best circumstances, centipedes can live up to five or six years.
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If centipedes or other pests have made unwanted appearances around your home or business, call Cantu Pest & Termites and schedule an appointment today with one of our friendly, experienced centipede removal experts.