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The woodlouse or terrestrial isopod crustacean


Who is the woodlouse ?

the woodlouse - Porcellio scaberLatin name : Porcellio scaber
Order : Isopoda
Family : Porcellionidae
Size : 10 to 15 mm
Location : generally damp premises
Period : all year round

What you need to know about the woodlouse

the woodlouse - Porcellio duboscqui

You may not know it, but the woodlouse is not an insect as such. It is one of the few terrestrial crustaceans. Breathing through gills, this 14-legged insect can only live in particularly humid rooms.

Woodlice are nocturnal creatures that prefer dark, damp, sheltered places. They often hide in cracks, under furniture, or in areas with high humidity. Their preference for moist environments is due to their need to keep their bodies hydrated.

Feeding mainly on moldy food or decomposing plant matter, this insect is only found in uninhabited rooms or cellars.

Among the 160 species listed in France, some species can perfectly withstand a dry atmosphere.

Although quite rare, you can, following certain climatic conditions, have a sudden invasion of this charming insect in your home, even perfectly dry. Although it is not very pleasant to have hundreds of woodlice wandering all over your house, it must still be remembered that this insect is completely harmless to you (it does not sting or bite), your provisions, your laundry or your home (no damage to structures or material goods). Don't worry, these outbreaks usually don't last very long !

How to prevent their intrusion ?

Woodlice can sometimes become invasive and unwanted. Despite their peaceful and harmless nature for humans, their excessive presence can disturb some inhabitants. Control measures can be put in place to prevent their intrusion and keep them away from our interiors.

1 - Eliminate entry points : The first step in controlling woodlice is to reduce potential entry points into the house. Check and repair cracks, holes and openings around doors, windows and foundations. Also be sure to install proper drain plugs to prevent their seepage through the drains.

2 - Maintain a dry environment : Woodlice are attracted to humidity. To deter them from settling in our homes, it is essential to maintain a dry environment. Fix water leaks, provide adequate ventilation in damp rooms like the bathroom, and use a dehumidifier if necessary.

3 - Eliminate food sources : Woodlice feed mainly on decaying organic matter. Avoid letting food debris and dead leaves accumulate inside and around the house. Regular cleaning will reduce their food source and deter them from settling.

4 - Traps and physical barriers : Specific traps for woodlice can be placed in areas where their presence is frequent. These traps make it possible to capture them without using chemicals. You can also use physical barriers, like duct tape or natural repellents, to keep them out of certain areas.

5 - Call in professionals : If, despite all the precautions taken, the woodlice infestation persists, it may be necessary to call in pest control professionals. They will be able to assess the situation, identify the source of the problem and put in place appropriate measures to eliminate the infestation.

How do you get rid of woodlice ?

1 - Keep sowbugs at bay by spraying a crawling insect repellent such as "Crawling Ant, Cockroach, Spider Repellents" from Aries. Composed of margosa extract, the woodlouse will not like its smell at all and will stay away.
2 - Treat infested areas with our ant oil, which can also be used on woodlice (the neem contained in this product acts as a repellent against woodlice).

3 - Sprinkle our diatomaceous earth over all infested or busy areas. For action in the tiniest nooks and crannies, small holes and hard-to-reach gaps, choose diatomaceous earth spray in aerosol form. 

The products you need against woodlice

Go directly to the detailed product sheets for woodlice control.

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Here's what the woodlouse looks like in motion