The demons within the walls

House Centipede

Is there any invertebrate creepier than the house centipede (AKA “thousand-legger”)? I grew up in Upstate New York, and had never encountered one of these until I first moved to southeastern PA around 1993. The first time I saw one skitter across the living room while I was watching TV, I thought for sure I’d seen some kind of demon–a lesser demon, granted, but a demon nonetheless.

Turns out it’s just Scutigera coleoptrata, a fast-moving type of centipede that lives mostly within human homes and eats spiders, roaches, bedbugs, silverfish, and other small insect-types that also invade human dwellings. Doesn’t sound like much, I know, and if you’ve been fortunate enough never to have encountered one, you have no idea just how disconcerting the sight of fifteen pairs of legs moving in a coordinated wave can be as this sizeable critter slashes across a floor or wall.

Since we got our dog, a Rhodesian ridgeback mix, we haven’t had much problem with these little guys. We just say “Copper, bug!” and he goes into full-on hunting dog mode, enthusiastically sniffing out the centipede before crushing it to death with his paws, and then typically tossing it around a bit before eating it. Unfortunately, he’s recently taken to retching — and I mean, retching — after eating one, so we’re not letting him do that any more. I looked up information on the house centipede, and it appears that their venom is not dangerous to house pets, though their bite is recorded as painful. After finding a close-up photo of a house centipede face, all I can say is yikes. I’m not surprised their bite is painful, check out those fangs!

(Photo after the jump)

Closeup jaws of the house centipede

If you do have these around, you might like to know that they are generally considered beneficial (see the list of undesirables that they are doing away with?) and that a concerted effort to kill off house centipedes might reveal a bug problem of another sort that you never knew you almost had… That, and their bites are apparently really painful to people, too. At least as painful as a bee sting.

On a related note, my search for information and photos of Scutigera coleoptrata led me to Dope on the Slope, a pretty cool Brooklyn-based blog of invertebrates and photography. It’s not many blogs that really catch my interest, so I figured I’d give this one a plug.

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Comments

  1. says

    In my home we call them magilapedes. There was one in our room and we ate it. We eat them all the time. In my humble opinion they best with the back legs shortened and covered in snail juices (hooray) peace out.
    Its yo boy mohammad

  2. Anonymous says

    these nasty things are all over my basement and i wasn’t aware that they bite until someone eles mentioned it and now i’m even more terrified than i was before.

  3. Amanda Valdez says

    These things are so ugly!!!! I see them everyday in my home from babys to large guys lol but I think one bit my child she has a ugly red swollen thing on her leg well we woke up and it is now oozing clear fluid from it ;( Hope it wasnt anything else since we also have scorpions !!!

  4. telsrt says

    lol, well I just caught one of these centipede’s in my bathtub, seen them before but they always got away from me! Apparently they can get into the tub easily but can’t scale back up the wall. :-) anyway I got him/her in a very small rubber maid container to show the rest of my family when they get up, should freak them out! As said they are very fast little critters and even in a bathtub they can’t get out of they are hard to capture, going to release it after I show everyone!We live in the foothills of North Carolina and have black widows, brown recluse and a host of other spiders and centipedes here so I would rather it kill those than to kill it!

  5. matthew says

    i have seen these around from time to time. It is nice to know they are fighting off the nuisance bugs! i watched a video on YouTube of one dispatching TWO brown recluse spiders in no time at all. Amazing.

  6. Mark says

    I have no fear of these miniscule runners. I grew up in Barbados in the Caribbean and we have the larger variety that grow to 4-8 inches. I got bit by both and that lil guy above was as bad as an ant bite, bigger ones can leave you black and blue for several days and the bite area looks like a small snake bite. Cherish your tiny friend since he is killing your spiders and bedbugs, while mine is eating lizards and mice

  7. AliceAimes says

    How can killers be proud of themselves for killing centipeds that rid other bugs..? Gail, Today is the first time since we’ve moved here that ive seen one. It wasnt fun killing it but wow a relief! Now im up worrying about when the next one will show up or more! They may invade my whole house. I honestly hope thats not the case. Ide so much rather see a spider (wich btw creeps me the F out!!) But centipedes take the top! The bites ive researched by them are extremely painful and leave large welts and puncture holes in your skin. Buying insect spray tommorow and terminating all insect life in my home!!!! :]

  8. AW says

    If you spray your foundation with bug killer you can get rid of them along a lot of the other pests they eat. I did it last summer and didn’t see any all year.

  9. JesseP says

    I just had to set one free outside. Caught one in a cup and tossed it outside and ran back in. I’ll go out and get the cups in the morning. But obviously we have some spiders in our place or he wouldn’t be around. The people just killing them need to think twice. What if a big giant came along and smashed you with his shoe because he thought you were gross?

  10. lil_ragu says

    I been seeing these guys for the 7 years I been living in upstate NY. The way I see it… they eat the spiders that eat the ants that eat the cereal my 7 yr old drops on the floor in the morning…no point in disrupting the food chain. But if I do get tired of them ill switch the kid to oatmeal lol.

  11. Michael says

    Man….I’m used to the darker brown ones, still creepy but this type was new to me and scared the piss out of me while I was on my computer on the couch I saw something in the corner of my eye. I thought it was a shadow of some sort. I looked at it because the shadow was moving way to fast…..AH! Nasty little thing has weird V shaped legs just like that picture….smeared it so bad and fast there is nothing to pick up. Kind of wish I had the nerve to pick it up with something and put it in garage though now.

    V/r

  12. Robin says

    I’m a little embarrassed to report I just woke up my husband to deal with one of these critters. He released it outside 10 minutes ago but every hair on my body is still standing on end. I find bugs fascinating--when they’re behind glass. Why do humans have such a strong visceral reaction to such tiny creatures?

  13. Gail says

    I live in the South of France and have just discovered these WONDERFUL creatures. They eat problem insects, like termites and bed bugs, attack wasps, and for the faint hearted -- kill spiders (is that a good thing?). Why on earth are killers so proud of yourselves?

  14. mike v says

    my mother has something like this in here apartment building, thing is these one are not afraid of people, and yes the bit is painful! they are bitting her all over leving welts, and two fang holes! people keep telling us there harmless, and helpful. But I tell you not these DEMONS!! these one will run at you, if you try to scair them off. she cought 1 inn a bottal to show it off, hopping to get some help getting rid of them. in the air tight bottle it spun like a cacoon around itself?? odd little pets. It looks like where just going to move here and try not to bring any, in the move. cuz she can’t live this way, between the painful bits, welts, and spikes in her blood sugar, every time she has a new bit. In my view they are dangers to older people, and people with sugar problems.

  15. Lise says

    Why are you guys killing these guys? Jinx and Shakira have the right idea….

    Permanently get rid of them? Yeah, clean your house and get rid of their food!

  16. Shakira says

    I just found one in my bathroom. I had thoughts of killing it, but I decided on doing some research before commencing to do that. Once I did, I changed my mind. I opened a window and set it free. As creepy as it may look. I saw some beauty in that creature… besides, he kills my pests!

  17. jinx says

    omg so creepy but cool i work in a lab so we all look at this creepy thing and did some resurch on it so i but it back where i found it and we are going to let it live here as a guest

  18. Brie says

    all i have to say is ewwwwwww if i see one…yeah i think i just might faint lol OR might be abit lazy to kill them because of their fastness lol

  19. Lawrence says

    I JUST literally found one for the first time EVER, Me and my wife have two children and my daughter was just crawling around minding her own business when this little bugger crawled outa (Almost literally?) no where. Too think these things lay around a hundred eggs, I dont care of these are harmless too humans, I have bugs and its like this THING came outa nowhere and ended up on my living room floor. I took some window cleaner too it and killed it, Is there any way that anyone knows of too PERMANETLY get rid of em?

  20. david says

    man my son and i just found one in our house i kno what u nean its fast and creepy look n well thanks for the info u posted it helped out alot

  21. durandconnie says

    I’ve seen these once or twice; usually basement bugs that sometimes come up to visit. My son just killed on! LOL… boy it was big!!! We live in N. IL. I LOVE commits of die die die….

  22. peace says

    i keep seeing them coming from my bedroom window whice has a lot of cracks in it i think it had babys in my bathroom sink yuck it had babys or layed eggs coz now im seeing them as lil ones im so moveing as soon as possible if not then im boombing the house

  23. todd says

    Just saw a flashing dark object moving across the floor and was able to capture with a shirt.. released him outdoors.. they seem to love the basement as it’s cold and damp.. we have lots of spiders and silverfish too… I generally don’t kill any bugs especially beneficial ones as this little fighter

  24. Tia says

    My home is loaded with them and I have no idea why. But it’s totally freakin me out. I had one crawl across my face one night in my sleep. Is their any way to do away with them?

  25. Kevin says

    JUST FOUND TWO IN MY BEDROOM -- TIP -- THEY’RE REALLY FAST, USE YOUR VACUUM AND SUCK THEM UP, THEY CAN’T RUN FASTER THAN THE SUCTION.

  26. bug killah says

    I just moved into an apartment in west side of cleveland, ohio. And while i was having sex with my girlfriend on the first night….i glanced up and saw on on the wall. My girlfriend saw it too and screamed….i then killed it with a shoe. Pretty creepy. I saw one two weeks later and killed it. Only time i saw one previously was in a hallway of inner city high school in toledo, ohio.

  27. Anonymous says

    I just moved into an apartment in west side of cleveland, ohio. And while i was having sex with my girlfriend on the first night….i glanced up and saw on on the wall. My girlfriend saw it too and screamed….i then killed it with a shoe. Pretty creepy. I saw one two weeks later and killed it. Only time i saw one previously was in a hallway of inner city high school in toledo, ohio.

  28. Lahni says

    I just killed one last night because I have a baby who plays on the floor, but when I read all the bugs it eats I felt guilty killing it because our city has a roach problem and I’d rather have creepy centipedes than nasty disease spreading roaches! Guh! I wish I could just have no bugs in my house…

  29. brandi says

    Ugh I just killed three in one hr, I hate these fkrs I don’t care what they eat…now I can’t sleep for fear of being covered by nasty bugs with nasty legs all over my face. Glad to know they aren’t harmful, not glad to know they have gigantic fangs and a bite similar to a bee sting. Horray.

  30. cate says

    i was on my couch, eating a pop tart, minding my own business… looked at my leg. bam that mofo was on my leg! worst night ever i dont think i slept for 3 days. them fuckers are scary. and fast.
    call the orkin man or something, they seem to work really good. i’ve seen one in the past 3 months since the guy sprayed my house.
    screamed bloody murder when i did though…

  31. Kim says

    I call these spiderpedes. We first met them when we moved into an older city home…I can stand to even look at them!!! aHH!!

  32. Jess says

    I came across one tonight. I was walking down my basement stairs when I saw it on the wall. I almost touched it!! Omg so disgusting! And it was huge! I screamed bloody murder and ran back upstairs where my husband was waiting looking confused. He tried to put it in a jar and it scurried under the basement stairs. This is the second time I’ve encountered this hellish disgusting bug in my basement. I won’t be doing laundry until my husband buys a few bug bombs.

  33. Milyra says

    I live in St.Louis. Every Damn summer these little creepy fucks pop up!!1 They scare me. I just seen one in the kitchen.. IM SOOOOO CREEPED OUT BY THEM.. HOW DO I KILL? HOW DO THEY GET IN?

  34. kandice says

    I have lived in Illinois my entire life and never came across one of these creepy speed creatures. That is until about two weeks ago I was ever so calmly MINDING MY OWN BUSINESS sitting at the edge of my bed playing my XBOX and out of the corner of my eye I see something dashing on the wall from next to my bed towards my dresser. I immediately jumped off my bed and yelped! I have an insane fear of bugs (I even get grossed out by lady bugs… and I’ve been known to scream and throw things when I see a spider. And also not return to the room the spider was in for hours!)
    I heard my friends on the headset…”you ok? What’s going on” I had to very strategically make my way back to my bed to grab the headset. “I almost died” I replied. I then explained there was a bug and I think it was a centipede. Everyone thought I meant the huge coppery brown centipedes. But no no I assured them this was an ALIEN centipede.
    Anyways.. I stood in the corner of my bedroom and waited. And waited. And waited. Until finally he made a mad dash for my shoes (uh uh!) Just so happens his attraction to my $2 old navy flip flop was infact the death of him.
    I’ve seen a few more around the house and I immediately do one of two things. 1) find the nearest shoe and go into huntdown mode (and by huntdown mode I mean find an area in the middle of the room where he cant pull any sneak attacks and wait for him to show himself) or 2) I leave the room.

    I still never get in bed without fully examining my sheets, blanket and pillows. I’m glad I won’t die if I’m bit.. but I don’t want to find out how much it will hurt. Infact I think it would be worse to know it was in my bed than dealing with the bite!
    And of course I’m posting this at 4:30 in the morning because I was just greeted by this creeper. And google proceeded.

  35. evil steve says

    I’ve caught these since I was a child. They’re quick, but they’re really fragile. I haven’t killed a single one in all these years. They’re good critters to have around and, as far as the bite is concerned, I’ve never been bitten in 30 years of handling. Bad luck to kill these fellas.

  36. Miss Butta says

    Omg, I was in my kitchen getting a slice of Pizza, and I have the most precious Russian Blue kitten and she acts so wild. BUt I realized she was being extemeley wild, dashing down the hallway and behind the Piano. Then I seen her jump up and run as if she was bit, when I tuned on the hallway light i seen this creature running in the opposite direction of her.. UGH I almost died…. First thing I did as grab lysol spray… I feel like I must of sprayed it forever, was terrified. And My poor baby is drooling, I think it bit her tongue or something… Should I take her to the vet?

  37. hate this bug more than any other says

    An ex-gf of mine would flip out if she even knew that there was a spider in the same room as her. I use to laugh at her for that, since spiders were never a big deal to me. But then I started to see these things running and now I understand her fear of bugs a little better. They just look like the type of bug that would implant an egg into you or something (thank god that’s not actually the case!)
    It also freaks me out how their so damn fast. If you miss them the first time you try to smash one, you likely won’t get a second chance. Then when you do get it, its legs will still move around and stuff, sick. My favorite strategy now is just to drop some dish washer on ‘em. That way they get stuck and eventually die then I can peaceful dispose of them.

  38. Anonymous says

    One of the most hair-raising moments I’ve had in a while is to turn to the side while lying down and see one of these guys making a mad dash for my face. It’s on my bed somewhere now, I don’t know where.

    Thank god for you telling me what it was because I’ve never seen one before in my life. I’m scared to hear about the bite, though.

  39. salamurai says

    I lived in an old house for a number of years and encountered these monsters repeatedly during the warmer months, often seeing one dash from one heating vent to another in the living room. Sometimes I’d get lucky and find one parked … they’ll stand still for a good long while, motionless, but still creepy. Smah it, and all the legs keep moving, which is even more creepy. Worst time was encountering one about three inches long (and proportionally larger around) in a box. yeeeuuchhh. I hate them so very very much.

  40. Anonymous says

    That is the after effect of social Friday’s. You go out for drinks with your girlfriends and the next day you end up waking with a complete stranger in your bed. OMG!!! What a bug!!

  41. Heather says

    I was in my bed and I felt something faintly across my leg and I caught a glimpse of this making its way into my underwear… Thankfuly it disappeared after crawling in, it must have ran away back into the wall or something, my coochie is a little extra pink tho so I’m thinking I may have been bit!

  42. taryn says

    So I’m up late finishing some school work. I’m sitting on my bed now but earlier while sitting on the floor one of this blood curtling creeps made a mad dash straight toward me! I killed it but now I’m terrified to sleep thinking centipedes or spiders (saw a large brown one of them within the same hour) have 8 eight hours of oppertunity to climb on me! OMG make the goose bumps go away already! BLAH

  43. says

    I have encountered one in my house tonight, and wanted to make sure I have nothing to worry about with children, or my family? Does anyone have any idea by chance if you could just send me an email its posted in the website.

  44. Anonymous says

    One just barged in on me this morning while I was in the bathroom… I thought I hated how spiders look… I’d rather kill a spider than go toe to toe with this brain eating hellish creature. *shivers* blegh

  45. Anonymous says

    living in San Diego, Ca. 14yrs now, tonight was the first time seeing one . WTF….Moved here from the boondocks in Tx. never saw this before

  46. says

    yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu would never like these!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  47. Midnight rose says

    O gawd i’v seen ones up to three inches in length. let me say, every time i see one, i scream loud enough to wake the dead N cnt run away fast enough. I love bugs bt i cnt stand these. my mom and me usaully put any spiders outside, bt wen these nasty things start showing up, we let the spiders live in the house thinks they’ll eat the creepy bastards. Nw tht I kno its the other way around i feel srry for the spiders! my boyfirnd wudnt even kill one for me, he made my lil sis do it

  48. says

    Its been an exciting week in my little studio apartment. First came the mice in the night. So I bought a few of those sonic outlet nightlight rodent deferential systems that claim to rid you of rodents and insects. So t
    Last night my girlfriend claims she heard the mice move out to the neighbors. So as we were boasting a out our success this morning, my girlfriend looks up a screams with a fear I’ve never seen from her. I come looking half expecting to see a cobra in full striking coil, but instead saw a centipede lazily clinging to the wall. I assured her it was nothing and tried to pick it up with a wad of toilet paper. Well that didn’t work and the fury sucker jumped on me. I knew it was a centipede, the exact one you have pictured here. I started to step around and the little monster scurried like lightening under some clothes on the floor. I picked up the clothing and walked lightly out the front door where I released it.. Hoping not to see it any time soon. After reading your info, I am stunted to learn that it could have bitten me with a bite equal to a bee sting. All in all, I’m glad it didn’t bite me and it is equally lucky since it is living another day.

  49. Donna says

    Anything that eats roaches, silverfish, & ESPECIALLY spiders is MORE than welcome in my home. I’ve only seen 2 & I put the 2nd one in my closet for a silverfish snack. Bring ‘em ON!!

  50. geerrrrrg says

    just moved in to my new house at school. I got the basement which I thought was a big pick up cuz the room is huge, but these fucking things are everywhere. After researching these little buggers I dont know whether to kill them on sight or allow them to hunt and kill other bugs that may be lurking in my room. but they freak me the fuck out. I was soo fucking high the first time I found one and was convinced aliens had finally landed. I plan to form an alliance with these creatures. Together I feel we can rid my small dwelling of all other creepy crawlies. Keep your friend close but keep your freakishly creepy house goddamn centipedes closer.

    peacee

  51. jerry says

    I ve killed a few in the last few days, some 2 inches long, some smaller.

    I think these things come from a weird looking spider thingy i had in my home. This was a very very small body, and very very very very long legged creature that looked like a spider but had no abdomen, and I think they transform into these centipede demon creatures. I may stop killing them if they are doing the house cleaning even though they give me the fuckin creeps..because if these things kill spiders, why do they not kill the daddy long leg type that I think are part of the metamorphism of the centipedes?
    It is because they know their kin !

  52. kyle says

    I LOVE these things. they kill all the spiders that i ever come across (except for this huge wolf spider thats way too big). i see about 2 or three of them every night and i’m very used to them. before these little buggers started inhabiting my room in the basement i would get several spider bites a week. but not now they’ve completely killed of the black and orange spiders, then the white ones, and then the black jumping ones,and then most of the wolf spiders. but there are a few of them that are way bigger than the eyelash bugs and eat them, witch scares me.

  53. Naomi and Family says

    AGAHA!!!!!!!! My husband was “seeing a man about a horse” and one of these creepy things was staring at him from the bathroom wall! Im in California… this shouldnt live here… PA resident’s please come retrieve your bug. It NEEDS to go back… it’s way too creepy!

  54. Jeremy says

    i thought it was a roach the first time I saw it. Smashed it and then got a closer look of it on the bottom of my shoe. Freaked me out. Next day I saw a live one in my new home. Had PTSD with it, froze in one place. Don;t want to see one ever again.

  55. Jeremy says

    Most bugs don’t scare me but this one, I cannot deal with. I moved into a new home and the first bug I saw in the home was this one! I thought, oh man if this is going to be the common pest of this house, i gotta move. Goosebumps upon goosebumps and then I freeze.

  56. jen kennedy says

    These bugs are ridiculous…they jump,they avert,the throw up smoke screens…they are very very adept at getting away from an impending foot(or in my case soup can) I dont care WHAT bugs are in my house having this guy around to eat them up doesnt make me happy at all in the least.

  57. says

    Chris,

    It was good of you to mention that the centipede is a rather beneficial arthropod. A lot of people just want to get rid of centipedes because of their overall creepiness.

    If you want some helpful hints about getting rid of centipedes and other pests, please visit my website http://www.getridofitall.com.

    Thanks,

    Ted Curtis

  58. destroyemAll says

    .. jason are you serious? NY? it has the most centipedes. i see them everytime at my house, and i’m trying to find an exterminator

    but yeah last night there was at least 2 inch crawling and had the mother kill it, and right now i just killed a baby one. bastards

  59. says

    WTF, im from NY and I’ve never seen one of these, now i live in TN and im in my room and i see one just coming towards me, and it looked like it had more legs than 15. So i grabbed my boot and smashed it, but it was very fast and all i got was a few legs! I was like wtf is that, i thought it must be some new species or alien or something i didnt know what the fuck it was, it was like neon green with purple in it. idk its fucking ugly though

  60. Yaltro says

    Yuck. These creatures are definately the creepiest bugs I have EVER seen. I see them constantly in my bathtub, so I guess they like moisture. I get goosebumps whenever I see one. My family calls them million leggers. I saw one in my bedroom the other day just hanging out on the ceiling. I just can’t stand them. I live in southwestern PA.

  61. freaked out says

    My husband and I just moved from New Orleans to Northern Kentucky to get away from the hurricanes, crime, and filth. Much to my surprise I found two of these on the wall in our new garage and when I got closer to check them out they took off like a bat out of hell. They are soooooooo creepy. I think I would rather the crime and hurricanes than having to deal with these creatures from outer space!!!!

  62. sarah says

    ew ew ew ew ew! we found one of those this morning and we call it Pedey ( like Petey but with a d like in centipede) we have it in a plastic cup and are debating it’s future. I hope it doesn’t bit one of us! yuck! as much as I hate bugs, I don’t want to kill it.

  63. Adam says

    I lived in a house built in 1897 so, needless to say, it was teeming with life. We had mice, cockroaches and spiders big enough to have conversations with. None of those creeped me out like those little thousand leg bastards. 1″ long? PFFT! I had one that was at least 3 inches long that took up residence in my pants that I left them on the floor while I took a shower. (wont’ be doing that again)

    Seeing them in the kitchen or the bathroom doesn’t bother me anymore. It’s when I find them crawling on me while I sleep that nearly scares me to a bowel movement.

    I smashed one in the basement with a HAMMER the other night. Half of the carcas was splatted against the wall -- still wiggling -- and the other half ran away.

    How do you get rid of them?

  64. Santi says

    well i just killed my second one… these things are unholy…
    i have never seen anything like these fuc%3rs before…

    the first one i saw was in my kitchen… it sprinted across the floor… i stopped breathing for like a 30 seconds…

    these things run like its nobody’s business…

    from now on its kill on site. i’ll take spiders any day over these ungodly things.

    im still convinced they are from a “Zerg” Colony that landed on earth.

  65. Smuf says

    i live in Minnesota and i see these nasty buggers every day in our basement. i too thought they were some type of new species and they were pissing me off and it was totally serendipitous that i found this site…but how the hell do you get rid of them??

  66. joe says

    I just mashed a 2″er that fell onto my desk. -- From where? I’ll never know

    Dad always called them Sumbitches…

    ’cause they ran like one once discovered

  67. jamie says

    first time i saw one i was at work. it was about ten feet away from me as it hauled ass across the floor into a nearby hole. just last night as i was getting ready for bed i saw one in my bathroom. it was, atleast, no joke, two inches long!! in fear of it attacking me if i were to try and smash it, i grabbed a can of hair-spray and went to town. as i sprayed the little shit, he stood up on his back legs as if he were trying to fight me!!! after about ten minutes of sprayuing him he finnally died!!! staight up not cool. i fear we are being invaded by aliens:0

  68. Brad W says

    The other day I pressure washed my patio and basement stairwell and by the time I was finished I was drenched. I went to my bedroom to change. After I put on my jeans the tag was out of place and uncomfortable so I reached back to fix it. It moved. On it’s own. I pulled my hand out and one of these creatures was in it. With a speed that far surpassed any pitch I have ever thrown, I fired it onto the floor and promptly shortened it’s life span. Luckily it did not sting me, which is suprising because it was right up against my ass crack. Although the bug died, I feel like I have sustained the greatest loss because I will never be able to put clothing on again without turning it inside out and checking it thoroughly.

  69. says

    I live in NE Ohio, and first saw one in our school cafeteria. It was easily 5 or 6 inches long. I saw football players scream and stand on their chairs “WHat is it??!!!!WHat is it??!!!!”
    I’ve seen them in the tub, scurrying across the wall, once even had one on my chest as I pressed a stack of laundry against myself.
    They are the devil, and I can think of no more frightening creature than a LARGE specimen of these lighning fast, other worldly spectacles.

  70. says

    They are truly the scariest creatures on the planet, perhaps because they look like they are from another solar system. I was a church janitor for several years, and the old, damp basement was a perfect breeding ground for them. I have seen them speed across the floor and off a step and their momentum carried them 10-12 inches before landing. And I have seen large ones barrel through 1/4 inch deep puddles on the floor and leave a huge wake behind them. The largest one I ever saw was easily 4 inches long. Just the other day I saw one in my studio for the first time and they still scare the hell out of me.

    I don’t kill them (I’m vegan). I take them outside. But oh my god it is tempting.

  71. Erica says

    I moved into my apt in sept 07 and have seen theese creepy crawlies on the walls and running across floors every now and then. I usually kill them with a flip flop. I dont think pesticides are necessary or good for us to breathe. Although they creep me out to no end I have to admit i’ve never seen a spider or any other bug in my apt (knocking on wood right now) since i moved into my BX apt. Maybe they are good for keeping the other more harmful insects away. I still get creeped out though. Eh!

  72. Lisa says

    I have lived in Central Indiana my whole life, and never saw one of these things until about 6 years ago when I bought my first house. There are no words to describe the horror that raced through me when I saw this huge horrifying THING run across my floor at top speed. I had no idea what it was. I found out soon though, because I continued to see them regularly until I started doing heavy duty extermination.

    Although I have always been afraid of spiders, I have never been afraid of any other bug. In fact, I have always found bugs fascinating. NOT THIS ONE, THOUGH! This monstrocity is almost like a spider on steroids. The sight of it is mortifying enough, but when you see how fast they run, you’ll shit yourself.

    Anyway, I started buying pesticide and exterminating my house like clockwork. (I use BUG STOP.) I would spray ever six months. I didn’t want to WAIT until I saw these things come back, I wanted to make sure I always had a poisonous barrier down (both inside and outside my house). Anyway, I read up on them and they like dampness and moisture. The article I read said that if you had anything like old bricks or anything laying around the outside of your house, to get rid of them.

    Anyhow, a few months ago I moved. My current house has them, too! INTERESTINGLY, both this house and my previous house had been sitting vacant for about a year before I purchased them. That gave the critters plenty of time to make themselves comfy.

    I am now going through the process that I went through with the other house. I am getting the poison routine established, and I have already seen a drastic reduction. I’m going to do another heavy extermination in a couple of weeks, and then I should be good for the winter.

    Heavy chemicals. That’s all I can say. Do it like clockwork. It works!

  73. Melissa says

    Welp…
    I am once again being invaded by these sick creatures. I had them back at my first apartment 14 years ago. And here they are back in my life. I will tell you that no matter what these little SOBs will never stop sacring the bejesus out of me. I cannot stand them and i scream and freak out everytime i see one! It never gets better….if you have them you will be freaked out for life…sorry!
    :)

  74. Micah says

    It’s rare that I see them, but at first glance, yes, they appear as some Martian-bug. Since I’ve known that they are, in fact, harmless and beneficial for the household, I never kill them… and the times where I’ve caught them bare-handed (not having anything else to use) I’ve never been bitten. Just a quick, and casual, catch-and-release back outdoors is an easy fix. Again, I’ll say it, I’ve NEVER been bitten!!! They’re creepy, they’re fast, and they appear in the oddest of places, but not a concerning matter.

  75. danni rock says

    omg i hate these things!!!!
    they are all over my apartment!
    i saw one like last week and it was big enough to hop on and ride him around my apartment!!
    they are soo creepy, but theyre attracted to light, and they hate people….and are more scared of us then we are them.
    i have my stepdad kill them :]
    OMFG one time my dad was over& there was one on my ceiling and i had him squish it and blue guts came out! it was soo cool, hahahaha :]

  76. Jeff says

    This is perhaps the greatest house centipede support group ever.

    My girlfriend and I have been dealing with an infestation for about a week now at our new apartment (in southern CT). It’s like frickin’ Starship Troopers out here.

    A few nights ago, we were on the couch watching a movie. As I looked over at her, I noticed a 30-legged demon on the wall behind her. She shrieked as I was asked to perform my manly duties and dispatch the Godless creature.

    Startled, it began to make it’s way down the wall, behind the couch and towards the floor. I fixed my gaze upon the monster as I pulled away the couch while calling for my trusty RAID sidearm. My arm outstretched behind me as I looked intently upon my enemy, the beast tried to hide in a crack below the window sill just as my girlfriend delivered the payload.

    “DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE!” I shouted as I unleashed fury. With that, it fell behind the couch and began to move out of my line of sight. I pulled the couch toward me even further where, much to my amazement, my enemy had surrendered in a pool of destruction—it’s death rattle consisting of a weak pedaling of it 30 frightening legs as it lay on it’s back.

    “Stomp on it two…three times to be sure…” my girlfriend sheepishly asked. I hesitated for a moment as I made sure my slippers were on tight. Then…I went in for the final death blow, slipping on the sloppy mixture of RAID and juicy, purple bug guts. Catching myself on the couch, I shivered in fear as my adrenaline boner waned.

    After flushing the carcass, I began waging my research campaign to develop an extermination strategy. They must not live. And for all you dirty, nature-loving hippies out there, don’t even start with all the “Bu…bu…but they eat spiders and cockroaches…” bullshit. THEY WILL EAT YOUR FIRST-BORN CHILD! THEY WILL DESTROY EVERYTHING THAT YOU LOVE!

    KILL! KILL! KILL!

  77. Wil says

    I found one of these fuckers crawling on my ceiling in my bedroom about a year ago. I dont see them very often but they scare the shit out of me when I do. Me and my friends have called them demon bugs ever since our first encounter, due to there obvious origins in hell, and kill every one we see. For the longest time we didnt know what the bastards were. We were fairly positive the official name was demon bug, and anything other than that obviously wasnt it. We saw one last night and, just to try it, searched Google images for demon bug. A picture of this fucker on this sight showed up as number 2.

    Needless to say, we werent surprised.

    We got them ever since we got rid of the carpet in these two rooms. They are at least as fast as any living mortal and are the fucking creepiest things I have ever seen.

    Though the information was helpful, I will have to disagree. I am positive they do in fact eat humans, and must be exterminated. If you see one, kill it on the spot. One less bug will breed, and one less bug will have a chance of coming to my house.

    I live in southeastern kansas, btw.

  78. Patty says

    My basement has leaked 4 times in 3 weeks… we now have them all over. I killed one this morning I am assuming it is from the moisture. But I have 4 kids and well enough said. when they see them the cops come because of the frigging screaming. I hate them they all must die. I want to burn them leg by leg and give them the hell they give me. How do you get rid of them????

  79. Tyler says

    I live in PA and every so often you will see them runnin across the floor like CRAZY FAST. I just saw one earlier tonight in the corner of my bedroom and when I turned the light on to kill it…it ran away and is hiding. Now I can’t friggin sleep and I’m sooo tired. But…that little fucker is in here. I have serious issues sharing the planet with these creatures. They are horrific demonic things that are nothing but evil. I don’t get why people are sticking up for them “They eat other insects”…well thats good but if there’s anything Im afraid of other than spiders it’s something that fucking EATS SPIDERS. Why have we not evolved into a world without bugs? There are some bugs that I don’t have issues with…but these are one of those bugs where you think “Run away” and then that is followed by “You must die.” These bugs cannot be allowed to live.

  80. Smokey says

    I live in Virginia, lots of houses have them here. Specifically, basements. These things are completely repulsive.

    NNNN-eee-way, the best way of dealing with them other than an exterminator that I have found is to set up a few of those sticky type mouse traps. Let a few Scutigera get stuck on there and it will actually attract more as a free meal. (To make them even more disgusting, they are cannibals!!) Change the sticky pads every few months or when there doesn’t appear to be any sticky room left on the pad.

  81. Justin says

    Ive been killing these nasty things for a few days now.. i thought they were roaches by the look of their underbelly. I came across this page while searching for info on roaches. So i’m glad i know what they are now.

    They are extremly fast. I hate them. And yes I’m in Upstate NY too

  82. Drake says

    I had one in my room for maybe a half an hour/ I had never seen one before so my friend and I just stared, discussing weather it was a government spy or not. I hate killing bugs, but when I went to trap it so I could let it outside, i crushed it with the empty pickle jar. Oh well, if I left it there, it would have eaten my clothes D=

  83. Kristine says

    I was just talking to my Mom who lives in Georgia where I used to live (I’m now in Illinois). She was telling me that they just killed one of those nasty Eyelash Bugs. Those things are sooooo freaky. They move so fast and give me the willies. Yuck! Just having my Mom telling about it made me want to wretch. I never knew they were biters or hunters until finding this page. Thanks for all the info, and even though they eliminate some of those other nasty buggers, I’m certain my Mom will still be smooshin’ those suckers!

  84. nick says

    well i must say that today was a sad day for most wannabe alpha military males such as myself! i am stationed here in va and we go to the field often, well the house i am staying in has not been lived in for some time now. came home (barracks) from a long day in the 110 weather to see this 2.5 inch bastard on my wall above my rack (pillow) i jumped up on my tippy toes and began pacing like a school girl tried to catch it and it JUMPED onto my pillow then ran somewhere under the mattress which i can not get to. there are no more beds to sleep on and to hell with the floor. and honestly before finding this sight i thought i found some new creature and was going to be able to name it and the hole nine. anyhow any word on what kind of bug spray or bomb can kill it?? would be militarily (word?) appreciated if an answer could be found —nick —-hmngomez@gmail.com

  85. lindsay says

    I live in Tennessee and just saw one of the things for the first time!! OMG these are the creepiest things ive ever saw!!! Slugs creep me out and this was next to it and just had to run away!! It was outside on the side of the house. It better stay there!!! Just came across this site i was looking to see what the hell that horrible thing was!! Didnt know they stinged! not like i was gonna touch it to see!

  86. Katie says

    eww omg they scare the freakin shitt outta me! i saw one, one morning wen i was getting rdy for school yrs ago for the first time i was going pee and i jumped up and ran outta the bathroom screaming! they r some scarey mother fuckers! I always thought they were silverfish but i guess i was wrong!! they bite!? i didnt know that! oh god eww im getting creeped out just thinking about it now! :[

  87. Molly says

    D: i just saw one in my bathroom a few days ago my father saying up and down itsa silver fish but i know it was this it had muliple legs im terrified they bite i had just gotten out of a shower i was questiong what it was to were its 6:25 am i really need to go to the bathroom but i wont im there is a spider on the cealing D: so yes duouble wammy i can’t stand living in this old house

  88. says

    OH BY ALL THAT IS HOLY WHAT AN ABOMINATION OF ALL LIVING CREATURES!!! My girlfriend and I were watching TV on the couch when that thing came running at us from under our furnace. It was 2 and half inches long, not including antennas. It ran toward us freakishly fast and we killed it. We got online to look up what the hell it was, never seen one before, we live in Michigan. I hope they don’t live in a nest. We just moved into this house that was remodeled with no resident for awhile and have been having horrible bug problems. My girlfriend was attacked by a spider the other day and a bunch of ants cornered her.

  89. Cassie. says

    I’ve been wondering for months what these ugly things are. I encountered them many months ago, a baby one I think. I poked it with my finger (it was early, I just woke up D:) because I thought it was the rubber part of a bobby pin that had fallen off, but when it wriggled away…I just wasn’t the same.

    There was one in my bathtub nearly fifteen minutes ago and I flushed it down the drain with some scalding hot water. They scare the shit out of me :(

  90. Jade says

    can someone please come over.. and kill the monster… hes still in the kitchen.. and im really thirsty but too terrified to go in there…

    ~dying from dehydration

  91. laurwddcsd says

    just saw my first one tonight in my friend’s dorm room. scared the living shiz outta me. we named him fred and stuck him in the freezer. he’s now dead fred

  92. Sarah S says

    Dude, I was doing a search on Jessica Alba and found this. These things SCARE THE SHIT out of me. I’m not even kidding, I’ve been wondering for like ten years what the hell they were. Someone in high school told me once that it was a cockroach eater. I didn’t know they BITE people! OMG. I’m so getting pesticides.

    NOT COOL.

    I may have nightmares…actually I already do have nightmares about these evil bastards…ick *shutters*

  93. linda says

    omg, we just bought a house in july, and we’ve seen A LOT of these since we’ve moved in! we usually see them in the kitchen or bathroom- i assume they like moisture? they really freak me out, i actually get chills when i see them. i never knew they would bite, though. :( i have been trying to figure out what they were, thanks for posting the info!

  94. says

    Are you kidding me? there are a ton of people on here recently!! are we being invaded… I’m southern California and always had terminex until the economy got bad and we canceled about three months ago… guess i know that we were getting our monies worth as i have been in this house for two years and never see anything…. the one i saw was more like three inches… i actually grabbed it in a tissue and ran it all the way out to the garage garbage as i was afraid to leave it in the house garbage… it was HUGE and looked like it could have stood up a few inches off the ground it had tried to stretch… wicked!!

  95. Eric says

    I have a bunch of them at my place, I kill a couple a month. But till recently I have been waking up with some bites on me. I wasn’t sure from what insect though, there are 2 penetrations on each site, I though it was spiders but the distance of the penetrations are too far apart, unless it’s a giant spider.
    Now that I look at the close up image of the head of the house centipede I am sure that it’s them. It itches like hell with some minor inflammation. But honestly, I would rather a bite from the house centipede than spiders, especially the Guitar Spider, they literally rot your skin permanently. So keep eating them spiders centipedes!!!

  96. says

    OMG!!! im German so my gramma is verry bad! i think they look like a mutated cross between a scorpion, (german) Kellerassel) and a fache like a Grasshopper ;P . Wuah iii i´m verry happy that we haven´t so ….. animals in germany! Really!!!

  97. says

    My wife and I moved from northern California to southern Missouri about 2 years ago and have found an astounding amount of entomological “anomalies”, everyday almost we see a kind of bug new to us. I came across this particular creepy little bastard about 7 mos ago crawling around in my bathroom sink. Evolution is neat and very often it’s very strange. ;^}

  98. Stef says

    So good to know I’m not the only one freaked out by the monsters. The only centipedes I knew are red, small and rather cute. I encountered one of this beasts when visiting friends in the states and had NO idea what it was, just that I would not sleep in the same room with it. No way!

  99. flygirl says

    I aree with Mandy about their appearance… silverfish/centipede look. Most of you seem to be in NY, but I’m in TX. Most of them are very small & fast; the biggest i’ve seen so far has been about 1″. That’s big enough for me and I hope I don’t see an larger ones. I guess i’ll try RAID or something.

  100. So Grossed OUT!! says

    Oh. my. GOODNESS!! I just saw my first one by almost stepping on it in my kitchen!! I was screaming my head off!! Every way I was trying to jump to get away was the way he was trying to run!! EWW!! I am so grossed out right now!! What’s even worse is my Fiance just told me he saw one the other day but didn’t want to tell me about it!! =(

  101. Bunni says

    My family calls these things million-leggers, cuz 15 pairs of legs doesn’t sound like it when you look at them. They are ALL OVER my basement, where I like to paint and draw and stuff. I was actually online looking up a weird spider I found down there while I was painting my sister, but I guess as long as we have THESE freaky bugs in our house, I won’t have to worry about that spider for long! LOLZ! I hate them, though. They ARE like demons. They seem to always pop up at just the wrong times, like the first one I saw I was talking to my sister about a terrible car accident I saw. It ran over my foot, and I looked down to see what it was, I saw this inch-and-a-half long “million-legged” bug zooming across my room and up the room and scuttling up the wall. I don’t have to tell you that I screamed my head off. LOLZ!

  102. bill says

    Dude back when i was in school wich was like a year or so ago i would see those things all over the place they creeped the hell out of me.. no one knew what they were my science teacher coulden’t even tell us they are CREEEEEEEPY

  103. Mandy says

    Everyone,

    I saw one for the first time today, and let me tell you, it looks just like something straight out of Men In Black! It’s like a mutated cross between a centipede, a silverfish, and a spider! And it was freaking HUGE!!!

    Anyway, I just stumbled across this article and thought I’d leave my 2 cents.

    Thanks,
    Mandy

  104. Amanda says

    I noticed these bugs a crawling around my home about 2 months ago…i’ve killed about 4 of them, all different sizes. It does sound like they are helpful (Oh boy do i hate spiders) but do u know of a way to get rid of them? They have too many legs…….I guess im prejudice against them for that…i really dont want to wake up and see one crawling on me……

  105. brandon/casey says

    oh by the way hes a very BIG PUSSY!!! we put him in there with 2 ants, and 3 spiders… so far the ants as we call them “savage 1 and 2″ they riped off E.T’s antenna and is now gnawing on his leg…

  106. brandon/casey says

    dude i was sitting here at my computer, and my friend told me i had to come look at this “THING”!!!! lol… ok so i go in the bathroom and i was like WTF!!!! we thought it was a species unknown to man… he was like wtf i was taking a piss, AND I SEE THIS!!!! so we captured it in a jar… and put a plate over it and tapped it down… and we are going to keep it, feed it bugs and such, his name is E.T

    TX!

  107. says

    oh dude, yeah. I grew up in western new york state and had the traumatizing experience of seeing one of these monsters (non-affectionately nicknamed, eyebrow) race across the floor of my apartment. I thought it was a rat. I wish it had been a rat. I’ve never been the same.

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