Centipede & Millipede Control In South Florida

If there is one thing that we have learned in our years of providing the West Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Jupiter, Wellington, Lake Worth, and Boca Raton areas with pest control services, it’s that generally, the more legs that a pest has, the more likely that people will find it repulsive. Yes, when people think of a pest with many legs that they hate, they usually think of spiders, but at Native Pest Management, it makes us think of centipedes and millipedes.

If you have an infestation of centipedes or millipedes in or around your South Florida home or business, we urge you to contact us today.

Centipedes & Millipedes — What Is The Difference?

Per their names, centipedes have 100 legs and millipedes have 1,000,000 legs, making counting their legs the easiest way to determine what pest you are dealing with. Okay, well — maybe that isn’t true. There are many different species of centipedes and millipedes, but generally, centipedes have between 15 and 300 pairs of legs while millipedes have around 400. So if they are both long insects with many legs, what makes them different?

Centipedes – Centipedes are multi-legged pests that are distinguishable by their body segments that retain one set of legs. By nature, centipedes are predatory of other insects, using their potent venom to subdue and consume other pests. Centipedes are generally solitary bugs, meaning that unless you see many centipedes, you might be dealing with an isolated incident rather than an infestation.

Millipedes – Millipedes are much like centipedes in the sense that they are long, multi-legged insects, but what sets them apart is their body segments. Unlike centipedes, millipedes have two sets of legs per body segment. Millipedes differ, however, in the sense that they do not bite, and generally hide during the day. The largest and most interesting difference between these two insects is that millipedes travel, or migrate,  together in large numbers. So if you see one millipede, chances are there are more — so contact your South Florida pest control experts today!

Are Centipedes & Millipedes Dangerous?

When it comes to pests there are two main concerns that people have, the first being the discomfort that the pests cause, and the second being the threat, or danger, of the pest. Luckily, neither of these South Florida pests are terribly dangerous. Yes, both pests can cause you slight pain or discomfort, so they should not be handled, but neither pest can cause serious health concerns.

Centipedes are technically venomous, and they do bite, but as long as you avoid picking them up you should be fine. Millipedes, on the other hand, do not bite but have been known to secrete a defensive “ooze” that can cause slight discomfort. Rather than risking injury or discomfort, simply contact us at Native Pest Management and inquire about our centipede and millipede pest control services.

Identification: Telling Centipedes & Millipedes Apart

You might be thinking, “Why does it matter, they are both long, squirmy, and have a ton of legs.” While it is true, they do appear to be similar in appearance, properly identifying the pest can actually help make it easier for your pest control services provider to treat the infestation. Sometimes, the best way to identify a pest is its behavior.


As we discussed above, centipedes are known to have anywhere from 15 to 300 legs — but with a range like that, it can be a little hard to identify if it is a centipede or not. Centipedes may be in your house foraging for food with their venomous fangs extended. And if you pick up a centipede it may bite you — delivering a painful pinching sensation. So if you are bitten, or can visibly see fangs, it is a sure bet that your infestation is the work of centipedes.


Millipedes are the vegetarian version of centipedes and are not known to bite. Because of their naturally peaceful nature, they do not have visible fangs and instead have rounded, non-threatening, heads. While they may not bite, they can excrete a defensive fluid on your skin that could cause some slight irritation. So if it has a rounded head and no fangs, you likely have a millipede infestation.

Home Treatments That You Can Try

While yes, centipedes and millipedes are practically harmless and really cannot damage your home, they are a nuisance —and nuisance pests deserve the same treatment as damaging pests. But what can you do as a Palm Beach County home or business owner to try and rid your property of these pests?

Non-Chemical Measures

  • Centipedes and millipedes are prone to living in cold, wet, and damp environments, making heavy foliage and leaf litter their prime habitat. Removing excess plant matter from the immediate vicinity of your home can lessen the chance that they make their way into your home or business.
  • Water your lawn in the morning. Because these pests like cold damp places, it helps to ensure that your lawn will be dry before it becomes dark and centipedes and millipedes are attracted.
  • Try not to apply too much mulch in your yard. Much like leaf litter, mulch is a prime habitat for centipedes and millipedes. Applying too much mulch just gives them extra shelter.
  • Seal the cracks, gaps, and holes on the exterior of your home. One of the best ways that you can ensure that your home is not infested is to ensure that they cannot get in even if they wanted to! This method of pest prevention is known as pest exclusion.

Chemical Measures

While there are plenty of over-the-counter chemical pest prevention methods, we strongly suggest that you get in touch with our team of South Florida pest control experts. Chemicals, regardless of their marketed strength, can be potentially damaging if not applied correctly. For safe and efficient chemical application contact our team of pest control professionals.

Native Pest Management — Your South Florida Pest Solution

Do you have centipedes or millipedes in, or around, your South Florida home or business? If so, we urge you to contact us today at Native Pest Management. While these pests are not extremely dangerous, they can cause you discomfort, making the best decision to go straight to the pros! Our team of experienced South Florida pest control providers will happily come to your home or business, get rid of the infestation, and do whatever they can to ensure that the pests stay away for good!

We look forward to working with you.

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