Updated: March 30, 2023

Earwigs are creepy-looking insects that have long, slender bodies and pincers on their rear ends. They are often found in dark, damp areas like under rocks or in rotting logs. There are many myths surrounding earwigs, including the belief that they crawl into people’s ears at night. But what do earwigs actually indicate? In this article, we’ll explore the facts about these fascinating insects.

What Are Earwigs?

Earwigs belong to the order Dermaptera, which means “skin wings.” They have two pairs of wings, but only the hind wings are used for flight. Earwigs are found all over the world and there are over 2,000 species. They range in size from 5-50 millimeters long.

Earwigs are nocturnal and feed on a variety of things, including plants, insects, and decaying matter. They can be beneficial in gardens because they eat aphids and other pests. However, they can also be a nuisance if they infest homes.

What Do Earwigs Indicate?

Earwigs don’t really indicate anything specific. Like any insect, they are simply a part of the ecosystem. However, if you find a lot of earwigs in your home or garden, it could indicate that there is a damp environment nearby. Earwigs prefer moist areas and will seek out places with high humidity.

In some cultures, earwigs are considered a sign of good luck. In others, they are seen as a bad omen. But in reality, earwigs are just another insect that plays a role in the natural world.

Myths About Earwigs

There are many myths about earwigs, some of which are quite ridiculous. Here are a few of the most common ones:

  • Earwigs crawl into people’s ears at night. This is a popular myth that has been around for centuries. However, there is no evidence to suggest that earwigs are attracted to human ears or that they crawl into them.
  • Earwigs can fly. While earwigs do have wings, they are not strong fliers. They can only fly short distances and prefer to crawl.
  • Earwigs are poisonous. Earwigs do have pincers on their rear ends, but they are not venomous. The pincers are used for defense and for capturing prey.

How to Get Rid of Earwigs

If you have a lot of earwigs in your home or garden, there are a few things you can do to get rid of them:

  • Reduce moisture. Earwigs love moist environments, so reducing humidity levels can help keep them away. Fix any leaks or damp areas in your home and make sure your garden is well-drained.
  • Remove hiding places. Earwigs like to hide in dark, damp areas, so removing piles of leaves, mulch, or other debris can help reduce their numbers.
  • Use traps or insecticides. If you have a severe infestation, you can use traps or insecticides to get rid of earwigs. However, be careful when using chemicals and follow the instructions carefully.


Earwigs may look creepy, but they are just another insect that plays a role in the ecosystem. They don’t really indicate anything specific, but finding a lot of them in your home or garden could indicate a damp environment nearby. By reducing moisture levels and removing hiding places, you can help keep earwig populations under control.


Are earwigs harmful?

Earwigs are not harmful to humans. While they do have pincers on their rear ends, they are not venomous and cannot harm people.

Do earwigs crawl into people’s ears?

No, earwigs do not crawl into people’s ears. This is a popular myth that has been around for centuries, but there is no evidence to support it.

How do I get rid of earwigs in my home or garden?

Reducing moisture levels, removing hiding places, and using traps or insecticides can all help reduce earwig populations. Be sure to follow instructions carefully when using chemicals.