When walking around yours or another’s home, you may have seen small, roly-poly bugs gathered up around moist areas. These are classified as pill bugs, determined from their ability to roll themselves into a ball when feeling threatened. They are generally harmless creatures with a life span of merely days. They will do no major damage to a home, but can be a nuisance if there are significant amounts bundled together. With our state-of-the-art pest control service we will control the pill bug infestation.
What Are Pill Bugs?
Pill bugs are grouped as belonging to the crustacean class which includes shrimp, lobsters, and crabs. These, in turn, belong to a larger class of animal called arthropods which are marked by segmented bodies and stiff cuticles about the legs. There are seven segments that house the pill bug’s legs, behind which are six more segments beneath which are the bug’s gills. These segments control reproduction and excretion, with two pointy appendages protruding from the back of the bug. These are sensors, telling the bug when it needs to go into it’s defensive mode when feeling threatened.
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Origins Of Pill Bugs
The only available records show that these bugs originated in Europe around the 1800s. They are thought to have came into our country through the St. Lawrence River and the Mississippi River. This is significant because the lumber trade was big on both of these rivers and when the railroad and trucking business took over the lumber transportation trade, pill bugs were then spread far and wide.
How Do Pill Bugs Live?
If you see a pile of nice, moist leaves in the yard, you’ll most likely find a pill bug. The wet dirt beneath a pile of firewood, sticks and branches in the underbrush, and compost piles provide the heat and moisture they need to survive. These animals thrive in humid areas and become easily dehydrated and can die off if they can’t find the proper moisture needed.
Inside a home, look for these little guys in either a crawl space or around water pipes where humidity levels tend to be higher. These bugs don’t normally like the indoors due to its other than humid nature. They feed on the detritus of nature, excreting it back into the environment, where it forms phosphates, nitrates, and other nutrients used by plants.
Pill Bug Removal
As previously mentioned, pill bugs do not often thrive indoors. To more easily prevent their entry indoors:
• Make sure no moist, damp detritus lies up against the house
• Keep any logs for fireplaces at a distance of the house
• Get rid of mulch and grass clippings, leaf piles, brush, and dead limbs on the ground near your home
• If you have mulch around your home, make sure that any mulch is kept a good distance away from the foundation of the home
• If there is a food source present such as a vegetable or flower garden, you will need to use stakes or a trellis to pick up potential food lying on the ground. Pill bugs like to live in the dirt and eat the leaves lying within their reach.
• Seal any cracks you see in the foundation of your home immediately. Keep a close eye on any enlarged cracks in your doorways as pill bugs have also been known to enter through them as well.
• Because they do not live long indoors, using insecticides outdoors will also prevent them from entering a home. The best locations to spray are around the perimeters of the home and directly on the foundation itself.
Can I Do It Yourself Extermination?
Pill bug removal can be done yourself if there are a few bugs that are noticeable throughout the home. If these bugs are noticed in big groups however, you should always call an exterminator to get a professional opinion and assistance on taking care of the matter.
We at Drake Lawn & Pest Control have trained professionals that will come out to your home and effectively evaluate any pest situation that arises. Call our friendly staff today to setup a consultation so that your pill bug issue can be a thing of the past.