Monday, 15 June 2015

Earwig



Earwigs hide during the day in crevices, under debris and under pots. If you keen to have a look, night time might be a good time to check if they are the cause of the holes in your leaves, stems, flowers and fruit. 


Because of their intimidating pincers, or forceps, protruding from the abdomen, earwigs might appear to be a dangerous bug. This is a misconception. Earwigs can use their forceps to grasp onto a finger if agitated but they do not sting nor are they dangerous. They have no venom, so are not poisonous.

There is also a superstition that earwigs burrow into the ears of unsuspecting people while they sleep. This is a myth and without any scientific basis.

Earwigs use their pincers for defence and for sparing with rival earwigs. Depending on the species, adults range in size from 5-25 mm. They are slender insects with two pairs of legs. Some species produce a foul smelling liquid that they use for defence. Earwigs also produce a pheromone. Scientists believe that this pheromone is the reason that earwigs cluster together in large numbers. 

An eco way of getting rid of them is to lay pieces of ribbed cardboard on the soil overnight; in the morning, collect and dispose of the insects.


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