Pest Whisper

Desert Centipede in House: Expert Tips for Prevention & Removal




desert centipede in house

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Dealing with a desert centipede infestation in your house can be a daunting experience. These pests are known for their speed, agility, and venomous bite, making them a potential danger to humans and pets. Therefore, it’s crucial to take necessary measures to prevent and remove them from your house.

In this article, we will provide you with expert tips for preventing and removing desert centipedes from your house. We will also cover their habitat, behaviors, signs of infestation, and various methods for removal.

Key Takeaways

  • Desert centipedes in the house can pose a potential danger to humans and pets.
  • Prevention is the best approach to avoid a desert centipede infestation.
  • Signs of desert centipede infestations include shed exoskeletons, droppings, and sightings.
  • Various non-chemical and chemical approaches can help in removing desert centipedes from a house.
  • Professional pest control services can bring expertise and specialized treatments.

Understanding Desert Centipedes: Habitat and Behaviors

Desert centipedes (Scolopendra heros) are a common sight in the arid regions of the southwestern United States. These large arthropods can grow up to 8 inches long and have distinctive elongated bodies with numerous pairs of legs.

Although desert centipedes primarily inhabit outdoor environments, they may occasionally venture indoors, especially during times of extreme weather or changes in their natural habitat. They are highly adaptable and can thrive in many different settings, including deserts, grasslands, and forests.

Centipedes prefer dark, damp, and sheltered environments, making basements, crawl spaces, and bathrooms ideal locations for them to hide. They are also nocturnal, so they tend to be more active at night and retreat to their hiding places during the day.

Why Do Desert Centipedes Invade Houses?

There are several reasons why desert centipedes may enter a house. One of the main reasons is to seek out food. Centipedes are carnivorous and feed on insects, spiders, and other arthropods. They may be attracted to a house if it provides a steady supply of prey.

In addition, desert centipedes may move indoors to escape extreme weather conditions or changes in their natural habitat. During droughts or floods, for example, they may seek out shelter and moisture in houses.

Finally, the presence of cracks, gaps, or other openings in a house’s foundation or walls can make it easy for centipedes (and other pests) to gain entry.

Signs of a Desert Centipede Infestation

When it comes to desert centipedes, prevention is key. However, if you suspect that your house is already infested, it’s important to identify the signs of their presence. Desert centipedes are elusive creatures that are often found hiding in dark and damp areas of a house.

One of the most common signs of a desert centipede infestation is spotting the pests themselves. They are fast and agile creatures that can move quickly, so if you see one, there are likely more lurking in the shadows. Other signs to look out for include shed exoskeletons, as desert centipedes molt as they grow, and droppings that resemble small black pellets.

These pests are usually found in areas with high moisture levels, such as bathrooms, kitchens, and basements. Pay close attention to these areas and check for any cracks or crevices where the pests could potentially enter the house. Desert centipedes are also attracted to clutter, so it’s important to keep your house tidy and clutter-free to prevent them from taking up residence.

What to Do If You Suspect a Desert Centipede Infestation

If you think your house is infested with desert centipedes, it’s important to take action as soon as possible. These pests can pose a threat to your health and safety, especially for those with allergies or sensitivities. It’s recommended to contact a professional pest control company to handle the situation.

Professional pest control experts have the knowledge and tools necessary to safely and effectively remove desert centipedes from your house. They can also help identify the root cause of the infestation and provide guidance on how to prevent future occurrences.

Preventing Desert Centipedes in Your House

Prevention is key when it comes to keeping desert centipedes out of your house. By taking proactive measures, you can minimize the risk of an infestation and avoid the potential dangers associated with these pests. Here are some tips to help prevent desert centipedes from entering your house:

  • Seal cracks and crevices: Use caulk or weather stripping to seal any gaps or holes in your walls, doors, and windows. This will prevent centipedes from entering your house.
  • Keep your house clean: Centipedes are attracted to clutter and debris, so make sure to keep your house tidy and free of excess cardboard, paper, and other materials that can provide hiding places for these pests. Vacuum frequently to remove any crumbs or debris that might attract food sources for centipedes.
  • Remove potential food sources: Centipedes prey on insects and other small animals, so make sure to eliminate any other pests that might be lurking in your home. Use pest control measures to keep your house free of ants, roaches, and other common household insects.

By following these simple tips, you can help keep your home free of desert centipedes and other unwanted pests. Remember, prevention is always the best approach when it comes to pest control.

Removing Desert Centipedes from Your House

If you have discovered desert centipedes in your house, it is essential to take action promptly to remove them. Fortunately, there are several effective techniques for removing desert centipedes from your home, ranging from non-chemical methods to chemical treatments. Here are some options:

Non-Chemical Methods

Non-chemical methods for removing desert centipedes from your house include:

  1. Traps: Sticky traps or glue boards placed in areas where desert centipedes are likely to travel can be an effective way to capture them.
  2. Vacuuming: Use a vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment to suck up any desert centipedes you come across. Be sure to dispose of the bag or contents of the canister promptly to prevent escape.
  3. Manual removal: If you are brave enough, you can use gloves and a jar or container to remove the desert centipede from your house manually.

Chemical Treatments

If non-chemical methods are ineffective, you may need to consider using insecticides specifically designed for desert centipede control. Some chemical treatments you can use include:

Product Type Advantages Disadvantages
Dusts Long-lasting, can penetrate cracks and crevices May be harmful if inhaled, can be difficult to apply properly
Sprays Quick and easy to apply May need multiple treatments, risk of over-application
Baits Effective for long-term control, low risk of exposure May take time to take effect, potentially harmful to non-target animals

When using chemical treatments, be sure to follow all instructions carefully and take appropriate safety precautions, such as wearing gloves and a mask.

Remember, the most effective approach is to take preventative measures to keep desert centipedes out of your house in the first place. But if you do discover them, these techniques can help you remove them safely and effectively.

Hiring Professional Help for Desert Centipede Control

While proactive prevention can go a long way in keeping your house free of desert centipede infestations, sometimes professional help is necessary to eliminate an existing problem. Professional pest control services have the knowledge and experience needed to effectively control and eliminate desert centipedes in your house.

Their treatment methods are specifically designed for centipede control and are safe for both humans and pets. Additionally, they can provide ongoing maintenance and monitoring to prevent future infestations.

Benefits of Professional Desert Centipede Control Considerations When Hiring a Pest Control Company
  • Expertise and experience in diagnosing and treating centipede infestations
  • Access to specialized treatments and equipment
  • Safe and effective removal of centipedes without causing harm to the environment, humans, or pets
  • Ongoing maintenance and monitoring to prevent future infestations
  • Research and compare different companies in your area
  • Ask for references and read reviews from previous customers
  • Inquire about their licensing and certifications
  • Get a written estimate for the cost of services

While hiring a professional may involve additional costs, the benefits of effective and long-lasting centipede control can outweigh the initial investment. Remember to choose a reputable and qualified pest control company for your peace of mind and the safety of your home.


Dealing with desert centipedes in a house can be a daunting task, but taking proactive measures and prompt action can significantly reduce the risk of an infestation. As discussed in this article, prevention plays a critical role in keeping these pests at bay, and it is essential to seal off any entry points and remove potential food sources.

When it comes to removal, homeowners have several options, ranging from DIY methods to professional pest control services. However, it is crucial to exercise caution and follow safety procedures to avoid potential harm from these venomous creatures.

In conclusion, a combination of prevention, removal, and ongoing maintenance is key to controlling desert centipedes in a house. By staying vigilant and taking necessary precautions, homeowners can enjoy a safe and pest-free living environment.


Q: What are the potential dangers of desert centipedes in a house?

A: Desert centipedes can deliver painful bites that may cause discomfort and swelling. While their venom is not usually harmful to humans, individuals with allergies or who are more sensitive to insect bites may experience more severe reactions. It is important to exercise caution and seek medical attention if necessary.

Q: How do desert centipedes enter houses?

A: Desert centipedes can enter houses through small cracks and openings. They are attracted to dark and moist areas, so they may find their way into basements, bathrooms, or other damp areas of the house. It is important to seal any potential entry points to prevent their intrusion.

Q: How can I prevent desert centipedes from entering my house?

A: To prevent desert centipedes from entering your house, it is recommended to seal all cracks and crevices, especially around windows, doors, and foundation walls. Keep your house clean and clutter-free, as centipedes are attracted to hiding places. Additionally, eliminate any potential food sources, such as small insects or pests, to deter centipedes from entering.

Q: What are some effective methods for removing desert centipedes from a house?

A: There are several methods you can use to remove desert centipedes from your house. Non-chemical approaches include using sticky traps to catch centipedes, vacuuming them up, or manually removing them with a gloved hand or tool. Chemical methods involve using insecticides specifically designed for centipede control, following the instructions and safety precautions provided.

Q: Should I hire professional pest control services for desert centipede control?

A: Hiring professional pest control services can be beneficial when dealing with desert centipedes in your house. Professionals have the expertise and experience to effectively identify and treat centipede infestations. They can offer specialized treatments, ensuring thorough removal and preventing future infestations. If you are dealing with a severe or persistent infestation, or if you prefer to leave the task to experts, hiring professionals is a recommended option.

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