Centipedes are some of the most misunderstood creatures on Earth. For starters, they’re not insects at all, but rather arthropods closely related to crabs and shrimp. They also have more than two hundred legs (though many species retain just a few pairs). But perhaps their strangest feature is an organ called the scolopendrium that functions as a built-in exoskeleton. It provides protection for the fragile segments that make up the centipede’s body and can be shed when threatened or injured.


The Facts About Centipedes

Centipedes are bugs that eat insects and other invertebrates. They have one pair of legs per body segment. A centipede’s leg will always be in an odd number, which means they have 15 legs or 30 legs. Centipedes can grow up to 4 inches long, and the largest on record was 12 inches long.​

Centipede Habits and Habitats

They usually come out at night to look for food. They like moist dark places, and that is why they sleep during the day under things like rocks or logs. They hide in cracks, too. One cool thing about them is that if you shine a light on one, its legs will turn colors alternating from yellow, green, red, and blue. ​

How to Get Centipedes Out of Your House

Centipedes usually don’t want to be around people, so the only time you’ll see them is when they are looking for food or water. They like it moist, which means if you keep things dry and clean in your house, there will be no centipedes. If you do find one, use a shoe to get it out of your house and spray around baseboards so they can’t come back in. ​

Centipedes Appearance

The average centipede has a flattened, segmented body with one pair of legs attached to each segment. Long antennae sprout from its head and it has fangs that inject venom into its victims. Centipedes come in a variety of sizes and colors. Much like rodents or birds, some species are found only in particular parts of the world. ​

A Bite is Worse Than a Sting

Centipedes aren’t known for being aggressive creatures, but when they do bite it’s with fangs that inject venom into flesh. In most cases, this causes skin irritation and localized swelling or tenderness, but in rare cases—less than 1% of the time—the bite can be extremely painful and cause issues like numbness or tingling. Some varieties of a centipede also have venom that causes allergic reactions in people. ​

Centipedes Behavior

Though most centipedes are nocturnal, they typically seek shelter in damp spaces during the day. Thus, people often encounter them when they’re cleaning out their garages or basements and find a dead one on the floor. They generally don’t bite unless threatened and even then only if they can’t escape. They’re long-lived creatures and have been known to survive without food for months at a time. ​

Pest Control Port Charlotte FL

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If you find any Centipedes in your Charlotte County home, contact Bug Off Pest Charlotte immediately. We can help rid you of these garden pests and get your lawn or yard back to normal! As always, we are happy to answer any questions you may have about Centipedes or any other pest. Call us today 941-676-2005

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