House Centipede
House Centipede

House Centipedes: Facts, Behavior, and Control Tips


House centipedes(Scutigera coleoptrata) are arthropods. They were believed to be originally from the Mediterranean region. Adults have 15 pairs of legs, one per body segment. The last pair of legs on the adult females are nearly twice the length of the body. They have banded legs and 3 dark stripes on the body. There are 6 larval instars and 4 post larval instars prior to becoming adults. 1st larval instars have 4 pairs of legs. They have 5,7,9,11 and 13 pairs of legs over the next 5 molts. During the final 4 instars they will have 15 pairs of legs prior to becoming adults. Adult females can lay up to 150 eggs in a lifetime.

Behavior and Habitat

House centipedes are predators and feed on silverfish, spiders and other small arthropods. They prefer damp areas and are often found in basements and bathrooms inside homes. They can be found on the exterior under logs, rocks and stored firewood. House centipedes have poison glands they use to inject venom into their prey. They can bite humans if handled, but normally only causes temporary localized pain.


  1. Reduce food source by controlling other arthropods in and around your home.
  2. Seal cracks in slabs and concrete blocks.
  3. Screen and seal covers to sump pumps.
  4. Screen floor drains.
  5. Reduce humidity by use of dehumidifiers.
  6. Soil and landscape should be graded to insure water flows away from foundation.
  7. Insure water from gutters and downspouts drain away from the building.
  8. Remove stored firewood and debris away from structure.
  9. Contact your pest provider for additional treatments.

If you have any additional questions, Epituer Pest Solutions, LLC can be reached at 865-363-1155 or click here.

Epituer Pest Solutions services Knoxville, TN and surrounding areas of East Tennessee.

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