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Thread: Can someone identify this beast

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    Can someone identify this beast

    I live in Cape Town and recently removed a section of floor boards which I replaced with tiles. While removing the boards I noticed small holes and suspected I had some type of wood destroying bug. After the wood was lying outside for a while (about 2 months) I eventually got around to sorting it, as I wanted to keep the pieces that were still intact. I found several of these bugs, ranging in size from about 8 to about 20 mm. Hope someone can tell me what they are, and how I can kill them if they are indeed pests.


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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I'm not an expert but I've never seen a wood boring insect that has a ribbed type flexible body like that. I recon it's just a common or garden nasty pastie creepy crawly you have there.
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    Looks like mr centipede visited mrs cricket, and some freak nuclear reaction made the kids grow into 20cm monsters!

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    isnt that a type of ear wick? they climb into your ears and eat away at your brain till you go mad. . .

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    Diamond Member wynn's Avatar
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    Yeah! when I lived in 'Keep Toon' we used to call them 'earwigs'
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Yep - it's an earwig alright. Fascinating that the Wikipedia page doesn't recognise them as being present in our neck of the woods. They're covered in our SA training materials for pest control, although I don't recall ever being called out to resolve an earwig infestation problem.

    They're not classed as a wood-destroying organism of economic signficance, and unless the floorboards had significant fungal decay while in the house, are unlikely to be the cause of the holes you found.

    It is more likely they took up residence once you put the boards outside - a stack of floorboards in the open and subject to rain provides just the kind of damp shelter habitat they prefer.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mother View Post
    Looks like mr centipede visited mrs cricket, and some freak nuclear reaction made the kids grow into 20cm monsters!
    hhmm sounds possible... but these are 20mm not 20 cm

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    Yep - it's an earwig alright. Fascinating that the Wikipedia page doesn't recognise them as being present in our neck of the woods.
    Did you edit the page accordingly?
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndyD View Post
    Did you edit the page accordingly?
    S'pose I should. I'm not sure of their distribution in Africa, though. I know they are found in Southern Africa - don't know about the rest of the continent.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    All I know is that a bug that ugly needs to have a private meeting with Mr. Shoe in bout half a second

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