Chances are, if you live in a location with a mild climate, you’ve see a pill bug or two in your day. If you have long standing wood pile in your back yard, lift up a log sometime; I bet you’ll see more than a few.
But what’s the problem? If they stay generally out of sight, they’re not harming anyone or anything? Right?
While this is mostly accurate, homeowners with more severe Pill Bug infestations may not take much solace in the fact that some article is calling these bugs harmless.
The animals that we group under the “pill bugs” label need moisture to survive, so while they don’t typically enter your house, but that doesn’t mean they can’t.
What Are Pill Bugs, Anyway?
You might be shocked to learn that these things that we lump together under the pill bugs umbrella are technically crustaceans. They get their slang name from their tendency to protect themselves by rolling up into a shape resembling a pill in reaction to outside stimulation.
Also commonly referred to as roly polies and isopods, these crustaceans don’t bite, sting, eat household materials or lay eggs your home, but if you have moisture or cracks near or around your foundation, they can get in and pose a major problem.
How do get rid of Pill Bugs in your House?
There are several tips for getting rid of pill bugs in your house, but since everyone’s situation is different, these may apply differently to different people.
Prevent Pill Bugs From Getting In Your House in the first Place
Get rid of Pill Bugs in your House – This sounds fairly simple, right? If you seal off all the entrances that pill bugs might use, you don’t have to worry about them in your house.
Unfortunately, it isn’t always that clear-cut. First of all, Pill Bugs can enter your home from below the ground. Secondly, they’re known to cross under window panes and through sliding glass doorways when you leave them open for just bit too long.
Experts suggest not letting the mulch in your flowerbeds exceed two inches in depth, and for added protection, creating a buffer area between your gardens and your foundation.
Also, you can fill cracks in your foundation where water and moisture may be getting in.
It’s also recommended that you don’t store your firewood or anything else that would add moisture to the area directly up against an outdoor wall.
Minimize Moisture In Your Foundation and Ventilation
Very common sources of large Pill Bug infestations come as a result of moist basements and inadequate crawlspace ventilation.
That’s why it’s vitally important to not restrict airflow through your vents, and if necessary, get a dehumidifier for the basement of your home.
This will prevent the entry of pests, as well as additional damage from moisture down the road.
Check everything that may be contributing to excess moisture in and around the foundation and can be prevented; tree limbs causing excess shade around the area, piles of debris near the foundation, be they leaves, yard waste, grass clippings or otherwise.
Pill Bugs vs. Pesticides
You may have been advised not to use insecticides in the fight against pill bugs in your home. This is correct. Insecticides are probably not necessary to treat the presence of these pests, and since the areas in your home where they tend to congregate are also the areas with the lowest level of air movement, you may find yourself in some trouble if you go down that path.
Outdoor and external insecticides, however, can be useful products to sell all pests out of your home. Consult an expert before using any exterior products, to prevent damage and entry from pests, as children and animals can become exposed in some instances.
Yes, the crustaceans known by many as pill bugs won’t do you or your home any harm in most cases, but they can still present a nuisance by coming into damp areas in your foundation and dying en masse.
If you’re in a particularly damp climate, these problems may be exacerbated by the constant moisture, but remember to keep calm, and use these tips to get rid of pill bugs in your house.