||Yellowish to dark brown, sometimes with darker stripes or markings
||15 - 177 pairs
||Elongated, flattened, worm-like
||1/8 – 6” (4-152 mm)
||Found throughout U.S.
Centipedes are sometimes called "hundred-leggers" because of
their many pairs of legs, but they can actually have anywhere from
15-177 pairs of legs, depending on the species. Interestingly,
centipedes always have an odd number of pairs of legs.
Most house centipedes are nocturnal, and prey primarily on
flies, spiders, and sometimes plant tissue.
Centipedes are found throughout the United States and the world.
They are typically found in areas of high moisture, such as in
rotting logs, under stones, in trash or piles of leaves/grass. When
they invade homes, centipedes are most commonly found in damp
basements, crawlspaces, bathrooms, or potted plants.
Centipedes are generally considered nuisance pests, as they do
not pose significant health or property threats. However, all house
centipedes have poison jaws with which they inject venom into their
prey. If handled roughly, some larger species can inflict a painful
bite that can break human skin and causes pain and swelling,
similar to a bee sting.