Something you may not know about millipedes is that they are not insects. However, they are closely related to lobsters, crayfish, and shrimp because they are arthropods! Millipedes don’t live in the water though. They live on land where moisture is present. They are not dangerous to humans, plants, or animals; they are, however, a nuisance due to their large numbers, the stains that they may leave behind, and the occasional damage to seedlings. Some people can have an adverse reaction that may cause irritated skin when they come in contact with the fluid millipedes emit from their glands. It is always a good idea to wash your hands thoroughly if you come into contact with a millipede, just in case you are allergic.
The millipedes’ name is misleading, as they don’t have 1000 of legs. They are worm-like and have rounded ball-like body segments with each segment having 2 pair of legs. So, in actuality, they may only have between 40-400 legs depending on the size and number of segments they have. Their head is round with short antennae, and their length can vary from 1 or more inches. They can be light brown to black and are excellent climbers. You may see them climbing walls easily, and they can enter cracks and crevices that are above ground level.
The reason they are attracted to your property is because they are scavengers. They feed on decaying leaves and other vegetation that is found near where they live in the soil. They may even make it into your home through cracks and crevices to find moisture and other food. Millipedes are rapid breeders, laying as many as 300 eggs at a time, and they only take a few weeks to hatch. You will not want this pest to get out of control because it can get out of hand very quickly! They are hard to get rid of because you cannot see where they are all located. The ones you do see are creepy as they scurry around and up walls.
You can try to control the millipede population by removing all debris on your property such as: trash, rocks, boards, leaves, and compost. Move them far away from your dwelling to discourage millipedes from settling in there. You should also seal up all points of entry that allow them access to your home but avoid the use of DIY products. The use of over-the-counter pesticides is messy and potentially dangerous to humans and pets, so it is not recommended.
In the event of a millipede infestation in your Hawaii home or property, your best solution is to call on Sandwich Isle Pest Solutions. We use the least possible product while ensuring the best possible outcome - the eradication of the pests around your home and on your property. We can usually respond the same day or the next day after you call us; and we offer a warranty - if you are not satisfied with the results, we will return until the pest problem is eliminated. Prevention is the cure in the case of pests. The best way to avoid problems with pests around your home is signing up for one of our year-round pest control plans. Give us a call so that we can help you with your millipede or other pest problems.