Centipedes & Millipedes
Adult Centipedes are brown and measure over 1" in length. The heads of Centipedes have a pair of long and sensitive antennae. They have small mouths and have large, claw-like structures that contain a venom gland. Because most Centipedes are carnivorous creatures that forage for food at night, they use their claws to paralyze their victims, such as worms, spiders and small vertebrates. Centipedes may have anywhere from 15 to 191 pairs of legs. They always have an odd number of pairs of legs. They may enter houses and buildings, but they do not roam during daytime. They hide in damp areas around bathrooms, closets, basements and other sites typically infested by other pests. Although Centipedes may help homeowners get rid of insects like cockroaches and houseflies, large species could produce bites that are as painful as bee stings, causing severe pain, numbness, discoloration and inflammation, and some Centipedes can run quickly when disturbed.
Common North American species are brownish, 1" to 1 ½" long; segmented, with two pairs of legs per segment. They feed on damp and decaying wood and plant matter. You will find them indoors in moist areas such as basements, garages, and crawl spaces. Outside you will find them in leaf litter, landscape mulch, lawns, and under items in contact with the ground. There are occasions when thousands of Millipedes will populate an area, sometimes carpeting the ground and side of buildings with their bodies.