Pill bugs can roll up and form into a tiny ball. They are also known as roly-polies, doodlebug, chucky pig, cafner, slater, armadillo bug, cheesy bug, boat builder, granddad, cheeselog, carpenter, and gramersow. Pill bugs are grayish brown in colour and grow to about 3/8" long when they reach maturity.
Controlling and Preventing Pill Bugs
There are different ways to control sowbugs and pillbugs. Some methods are efficient, while others don’t have any effect at all.
If you want to apply pesticides, you should first refer to the laws in your area about the use of such products. Some pesticides may be prohibited in your area.
· Seal Entry Points
Pill bugs most likely entered your home through cracks or basement windows. Installing a threshold at the bottom of the exterior entry doors will help.
Apply caulk at the sides and along the bottom of door thresholds. By sealing their entry points, you can prevent them from invading your home.
· Minimize Moisture
Keeping your place dry can help minimize moisture levels inside your home. Secure the spots near the foundation by removing stones, mulch, leaves, boards, and other things that may generate moisture when left lying on the ground.
Items that can’t be transferred or moved, but are located near the foundation have to be elevated from the ground.
Divert water to another site immediately if it’s close to a foundation wall. The gutters should be working properly as well.
Fix leaking pipes and check the whole place for possible leaks. If your air conditioning is producing leaks, you should fix it immediately.
· Get Natural Predators
Lizards, frogs, spider, newts, toads, small mammals, and the like can help you deal with a pill bug infestation. They are your allies because they will chase the bugs away.
· Use Insecticides
Pill bugs will most likely die inside your home since there is no moisture. If you’re dealing with a large number of pill bugs, you should call a pest control company and let them do the job for you.
In case you want to get rid of the bugs on your own, you can use insecticides. Apply insecticides near your home’s foundation to discourage them from entering your property. Preferred types of insecticide include organic, aerosol, liquid, and granule.
How to Find and Collect Pill Bugs
Pill bugs love moist or damp areas, so look under paving bricks, flowerpots, flower beds, under stones and other items with moisture under it. Do the following to find these pests and lure them out of hiding:
- To lure pill bugs out, you should put garden debris such as leaves under the shade and then water it. Cover the garden debris with cardboard, plastic or plywood and keep it moist for a couple of days.
- Get a shovel, spoon, and container ready before collecting the bugs. Remove the cover of the garden debris and pick up the bugs with the spoon or shovel.
- Transfer them to the container. After getting the first batch of pill bugs out, get rid of the garden debris and stones you placed one at a time. Soon after, you will notice that the container is filling up.
- Repeat the process as necessary and discard the bugs in an area far from your home or greenhouse.
Why Eradicate Pill Bugs?
Pill bugs can kill orchids, young plants, or greenhouse plants, so clean the floor regularly and get rid of any plant debris on the ground. Flowerpots should be elevated at all times to prevent these pests from having a hiding place. Regardless of the method you choose, it’s best to control pill bugs before they infest any part of your home.
This includes closing all possible openings such as under the door and cracks. Spray insecticide around and near your foundation. If you saw pill bugs inside your home, don’t panic because they won’t stay long.
Just make sure to secure the areas where a high level of moisture is likely to occur. You can also pick up or vacuum the bugs and then discard them afterwards.
Biology and Habitat
Since pill bugs are crustaceans, they’re usually found in environments with high moisture levels such as damp basements. They don’t pose any threat to humans, as they don’t infest clothing or food.
Pill bugs don’t bite and they don’t carry diseases. However, they can be a nuisance in your property especially if they appear in large numbers. They usually hide under flowerpots, stones, vegetables, and leaf litter during the day.
They may enter homes and buildings through door thresholds, expansion joints, seal cracks, crawl spaces, foundation walls, and other entry points. They won’t live long inside buildings because the place lacks moisture unless there’s a moist environment in your place where these pests can live.
Pill bugs love to eat bacteria and fungi that are usually found in decaying organic matter. They feed on decaying plants because they’re after the microorganisms and fungi that inhabit the plants.It’s important to remove these pests from the roots immediately to prevent it from causing more damage to the plants. If the bugs are not removed, the plants will die eventually.