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Pest Education: Earwigs in Ontario

Monday, December 26, 2022 by Greeny’s Pest Control Inc.

Earwigs are a common pest found in gardens and homes throughout Ontario. These insects are known for their distinctive pincers on their hind end, which they use to defend themselves and catch prey. While they are not typically harmful to humans, they can be a nuisance when they invade gardens and homes.

Earwigs are nocturnal insects that are attracted to moist, dark areas. They are often found in damp basements, crawl spaces, and under rocks or woodpiles. In gardens, they can be found hiding in flowerbeds and under plants.

Earwigs can cause damage to plants by feeding on the leaves and stems of young plants, which can weaken or kill them. They are also known to eat the flowers and fruit of plants, which can be frustrating for gardeners who have worked hard to grow and care for their plants.

There are several steps that homeowners can take to prevent earwigs from becoming a problem in their gardens and homes. One of the most effective methods is to eliminate any moist or damp areas that may be attracting the insects. This can be done by sealing cracks and gaps in foundations, making sure gutters and downspouts are in good repair, and fixing any leaks or plumbing issues that may be causing moisture to build up.

Another way to prevent earwigs is to eliminate any potential hiding places in the garden. This can be done by removing piles of leaves, branches, and other debris that may be providing shelter for the insects. It is also a good idea to keep grass and weeds trimmed, as earwigs often hide in tall grass and weeds.

If you do find earwigs in your garden or home, there are several methods you can use to control their population. One option is to use insecticides or insect repellents, which can be found at your local gardening or home improvement store. These products are typically sprayed directly onto plants or applied around the perimeter of your home or garden to create a barrier that earwigs cannot cross.

Another method of controlling earwigs is to use bait stations. These are small containers filled with a substance that earwigs are attracted to, such as a mixture of sugar and water or oil. The earwigs will crawl into the bait station and become trapped, allowing you to remove and dispose of them easily.

One natural method of controlling earwigs is to use predatory insects, such as ladybugs or lacewings, which will feed on the earwigs and help keep their population in check. You can also introduce birds, such as sparrows or finches, to your garden, as they will also eat earwigs and other insects.

Overall, earwigs can be a nuisance for gardeners and homeowners in Ontario, but with the proper precautions and control methods, they can be managed effectively. By eliminating moist and damp areas, eliminating hiding places, and using insecticides, bait stations, or natural predators, you can keep earwigs at bay and enjoy a healthy and thriving garden.

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