Appearance and Size Facts
- Oval or slightly elongate with a flattened body
- Wingless, brownish or slate gray in color, have well-developed eyes, seven pairs of legs
- Overlapping "armored" plates that make them look like little armadillos
- Two tail-like structures on the rear end and look similar to pillbugs, but cannot roll into a tight ball like the pillbugs
- Slow-moving crustaceans that are more closely related to crayfish, shrimp, and lobsters than to insects
- Size: Up to 3/4 inch long
Behavior and Habitat of Sowbugs
Sowbugs mate throughout the year, with most activity occurring in the spring. The female carries the eggs, numbering from 7 to 200, in a brood pouch on the underside of her body. Eggs hatch in 3 to 7 weeks and the young are white-colored. They remain in the brood pouch for 6 to 8 weeks until they are able to take care of themselves. There may be one to two generations per year, with individuals living up to three years depending on weather conditions. Sowbugs, sometimes called ""woodlice,"" live outdoors, but they may occasionally enter homes in damp areas such as basements and garages. These creatures are a nuisance, and when in large numbers can feed on young plants in greenhouses. Some may crawl into swimming pools and drown, causing complaints. Those that wander into homes usually find a moist place near a leaky pipe or in a damp basement, bathroom, or laundry room.
Signs of Infestation of Sowbugs
These creatures live outdoors, feeding on decaying organic matter and occasionally young plants and their roots. They may become pests in and around homes where flower bed mulches, grass clippings, leaf litter, rotting boards, trash, rocks, and pet droppings are present. Adequate moisture is essential for their survival; they group in masses to reduce water loss.
Tips for Prevention of Sowbugs
Pillbugs can be avoided by eliminating food sources such as vegetable or plant debris.
Latest Pest Control News
Although most south Floridians welcome the cooler weather, it may draw inside several unwanted guests. As temperatures drop, rodents are more likely to invade homes looking for warmth. We can't blame them, but we also do not have to live with them. Rats and mice can strike terror in even the most...Read More ›
Most South Floridians embrace the cool winter weather, if we are lucky. And just as we finish battling Chinch Bugs all summer long, now we have a new problem in our lawns: Brown Patch Fungus. If you notice large circular patches of brown grass in your yard, call Hulett Environmental Services today...Read More ›
Jan 22, 2020—Ants
Big Headed Ants are an invasive species that are common in subtropical climates, like we have here in south Florida. They can be particularly difficult to control due to a single colony having multiple queens, reproducing year round. Often, multiple colonies can completely take over a landscape,...Read More ›