Centipedes are renowned for being scary-looking, causing many people to instantly grab the nearest bug-killing spray or simply squash them as quickly as possible.
But whilst centipedes may look freaky with their countless legs and unusually long bodies, there’s plenty of key things you need to know – guaranteed to make you think twice about squashing them again.
They Can Move… Without A Backbone
As humans, we rely on our backbone constantly without even realizing it. Without it, we simply couldn’t move. But one characteristic that makes centipedes so unique and remarkable, is they simply don’t have one!
There’s Thousands Of Them…
Whilst some are more commonly found in homes than others, there are actually thousands of centipede species out there – making them far more versatile, varied and interesting than us.
A Body Illusion
What’s more, their body is specifically designed to be complex to predators. With their antennae often stretching much further than their body length, centipedes frequently appear far longer than they actually are. Not to mention the purpose of their many legs…
The multitude of legs found on a centipede is for one sole purpose – to move fast. Many centipedes are able to move up to 1.3 feet per second from being still, across floors, walls and ceilings!
Tough As A Tank
In addition to being impressively fast movers, centipedes also boast a remarkably thick skin. Virtually indestructible in the insect world, centipedes offer the equivalent toughness of a tank when compared to our standards.
They’re Constantly On-The-Go… And NOT Here To Scare You
Believe it or not, centipedes originate from the Mediterranean region. So, next time you see one of these critters in your home, just think of the colossal amount of time it would have taken for them to get there, and why they may have chosen your home as a resting place…
A Haven Of Warmth
You see, centipedes thrive in humid, warm environments – and that’s exactly what your home is to them. During colder months, they’ll naturally gravitate towards your home simply because of the warmth provided. They don’t mean to scare you!
We’re The Scary Ones
We’re unfairly unhospitable to centipedes, simply because they aren’t the prettiest creatures to look at. Tears, tantrums and mad rushes to find the nearest can of bug spray are typical reactions, but there’s really no need…
Nothing To Fear
This common fear of centipedes is called chilopodophobia. It’s based around the idea that centipedes are a harmful threat but, whilst some centipedes are venomous, it’s virtually impossible for a house centipede to be a danger to humans.
Being Hostile Is The Worst Possible Reaction…
Centipedes can sting, but will only do so as a last resort. So, if you’re trying to attack them with bug spray, this is in fact the worse possible thing you can do!
A Bee Sting Is More Severe
These delicate creatures find it hard to pierce human skin but, if they do, you can be rest assured a bee sting is far more severe. Centipedes are smart, and they know when danger is approaching, i.e. you! And considering what they secretly do for us, we should really be grateful…
Paying Rent In Their Own Unique Way
In fact, centipedes are insectivores. This means they eat other insects – including a multitude of household pests. Silently devouring spiders and other unwanted creatures, having a centipede in your home should actually be considered a good thing!
Adaptable To YOUR Home’s Pests
In addition to holding their victims and successfully injecting their venom, house centipedes have also been seen to kick their prey with an impressively long leg or two.
As well as ridding your home of scary critters, centipedes actually try hard to look their best – despite you probably thinking they look freaky. Often seen using their front legs to “groom” themselves, centipedes are actually pretty self-conscious creatures.
If That Simply Isn’t Enough…
But if, after all you now know, you’re still not keen on letting harmless centipedes stay warm in your home, here are some humane, unthreatening methods you can use to keep them at bay.
Keep Your Home Dry
As you know, centipedes thrive in warm, humid environments. So, a great way to deter them from entering is to use a dehumidifier to keep your home as dry as possible – even more effective when combined with our next tip…
Surprisingly, spicy cayenne pepper has been consistently found to be an unharmful, natural deterrent to centipedes. Simply spread around your home, especially windows and doors, to keep centipedes out.
If They Don’t Live Near, They Can’t Come Inside
A centipede’s natural habitat is far from the conditions of your home, with outdoor vegetation being their ideal home of choice. So, if you move any large piles of wood, grass or leaves away from your home, their inhabiting centipedes are far less likely to come inside.
One Of A Kind
Even if you’re still not drawn toward centipedes, you can’t deny they’re a hugely mesmerizing, interesting species to both look at and learn about – as well as being natural helpers around the house in killing pests!
Only a real problem if you have a severe infestation, remember to think twice before instantly stamping on or squashing the next centipede you see in your home. They may be helping you out far more than you realize.