Centipedes are predators of insects (carnivores).
They will eat other bugs such as the following:
- any other bug that you can find in a damp, dark area
Since they eat all of these pests, this why some experts say that you should not kill them. They will not eat plants or wood.
When centipedes move indoors, they hide in closets or in bathrooms and they seek out spiders or flies to eat. Centipedes prefer damp, humid environments. Scientists think that this may be because the centipede’s outer skin does not retain moisture as well as some other creatures. Centipedes are active and do their hunting at night.
Outdoors centipedes spend the day in flowerbeds. They hide under leaf litter or mulch. People also find centipedes under woodpiles, logs, and landscape timbers.
Removal from the Home
Centipede removal is intricately tied to understanding their food supply.
A centipede control program should have two parts. The first part consists of eliminating the centipede food supply. Asking the question “what do centipedes eat?” leads to the answer: insects. To get rid of insects, it is important to eliminate their hiding places. Start outside the home. Put fire wood up on a rack. Move it as far away from the house as possible. Use a rake to clear a 12″ zone next to the foundation. Move the mulch and all of the dead leaves back from the foundation.
Barriers for Entryways
The other part of the program involves closing the entryways that the centipedes use to get inside.
Inspect the outside of the house for insect entryways. Make sure the exterior doors close tightly. Replace any missing weather-stripping. If the house has a crawl space, check the screens on the vents and make sure the access door closes securely.
If the house has a brick exterior, the weep holes may allow insects and centipedes to get inside. Small squares of plastic screen can be inserted into the weep holes. This will keep insects out but still allow air to circulate.
An insecticide barrier on the outside foundation can help prevent centipedes and insects from gathering on the house. The rain and sun will break down the insecticide, so it will have to be re-applied periodically. Many people prefer to have a pest control professional make the applications. Ask a pest control technician to place a couple of sticky traps in the garage. One trap on each side of the garage door will help catch any centipedes that squeeze past the garage door.