Millipedes seem like harmless pests - until they raid your house in the masses. Before you know it, they'll be crawling all over the place. Though they don't cause much damage to you, these multi-legged creatures may give you a scare. Consider these tips to keep millipedes out of your house.
Learning more about millipedes
Millipedes actually don't fall into the massive insect family, the University of California-Davis stated. They're considered arthropods. Millipedes' favorite foods are decaying plants or other dead organic matter. Though they usually like the outdoors, they'll come inside during the winter to keep warm. Many homeowners are unaware of their pest problem until warmer months in the spring and summer. Then, the millipedes will come marching out in search of any kind of rotten plant. Most people will freak out at how many there are. While hibernating in the winter, these bugs will breed. When this happens, armies are formed. Females can lay up to 300 eggs at a time, which can create chaos in your home. They're particularly fond of damp environments, so any area of your home, such as under the sink, is vulnerable to them. Unlike other bugs, they've got a long life ahead of them. Most millipedes can live between five to seven years.
How to prevent millipedes
Consider these pest management tips to keep millipedes from crawling into your home.
Don't let them in
The best method of millipede prevention in your home is keeping them out of the house in the first place, WalterReeves.com noted. Look for items near the perimeter of your home that may encourage a millipede habitat. Piles of damp leaves or mulch are the perfect spots. Remove these piles from the area and place them far away from your house, like at the end of your yard. Homeowners should also manage grass levels so that overgrowth doesn't create a moist environment.
Take away moisture
Since millipedes feel most comfortable in moist areas, take that away from them. Use a dehumidifier in particularly damp areas, such as the basement. In rooms that don't have windows or have poor air circulation, use fans to keep the air moving around and the room dry. If you have leaky faucets that create a damp area underneath sinks or in cabinets, repair them immediately and use fans to keep the wood dry in the meantime.
Millipedes are small, which means they don't need much room to wiggle through into your house. Keep them out by sealing any cracks and crevices that sit around wiring or pipes in your home. Any holes in screens or openings in window panes should also be shut.
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