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What Do Centipedes Look Like?

Unlike millipedes, these pests have only one pair of legs per body segment. Centipede larvae gain more every time they molt until they reach maturity. An adult house centipede, for example, has 15 segments with 30 long, delicate limbs, which allow for its quick movements.
picture of a centipede diet

How Can I Tell if I Have a Centipede Problem?

Considered occasional invaders, centipedes hunt alone and don’t typically breed indoors. They also need a moist habitat to avoid dehydration. Certain settings attract the pests, and there are a few signs that could indicate an issue:

  • Multiple Pests – Centipedes prefer to be alone. Seeing more than one in a day or two is a bad sign.
  • Larvae – The pests lay eggs in soil, and larvae may develop inside houseplant pots or in bags of potting mix.
  • Other Infestations – Termites, bed bugs, and ants are all part of the centipede diet. A problem with any of these insects can also bring the arthropods indoors.
  • Moisture – Cool, damp areas like laundry rooms, bathrooms, and basements are inviting to these pests. Plumbing leaks under sinks attract them as well.

How Do Centipedes Get Inside Homes and Businesses?

Centipedes often enter houses through drainpipes, outdoor plumbing, and gaps around doors or windows. They also gather beneath rocks and wet undergrowth, sometimes wandering indoors to hunt for prey or take shelter.

Commercial spaces are no different when it comes to having centipedes. For example, public restrooms in schools, shopping centers, and office buildings often have water leaks in need of repair. Combined with a lack of cleaning, this can lead to increased moisture and clutter that provide the pests with the perfect home.

Are Centipedes Dangerous?

They don’t cause damage or spread disease. However, centipedes are venomous. They have specialized pincers that grasp an insect and inject it with venom. The pests can attack humans and pets, too. More sting than bite, centipede venom can cause an allergic reaction, which is dangerous for sensitive individuals.

Perhaps the biggest issue with centipedes is their appearance. The sight of a long, leggy creature snaking its way across the floor of a restaurant dining area or grocery store aisle, could result in startled or scared customers and poor reviews.

How Can I Prevent Centipede Infestations?

To avoid infestation, reduce moisture with a dehumidifier, fix leaking pipes, and seal cracks that lead outside. Also, be sure to clean up any leaf piles or wet mulch near foundations. Contact Waltham Pest Services if you have trouble getting rid of centipedes in your home or business.

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