Ground Beetles are Common Household Pests

Shiny, often black ground beetles are common predators along foundations, lawns, and crop fields. These fast crawlers typically have narrow, flat, triangular heads with a pair of forward pointed pinching jaws.

Figure 1.  Typical ground beetle (bottom and top view of insect).  Look for pinching jaws at the front of the head. (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK)

Figure 1. Typical ground beetle (bottom and top view of insect). Look for pinching jaws at the front of the head. (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK)

Their flat bodies allow them to enter cracks and crevices so they can easily crawl inside as accidental invaders. They are a temporary nuisance that may be mistaken for cockroaches. Ground beetles will not become established indoors as permanent residents.

Management

Be sure door sweeps provide complete seals at exterior doors and check for cracks or gaps around basement windows. Tall grass, thick mulch, or landscaping rocks and timbers are typical places where ground beetles hang out. Denying harborage is a good way of reducing these insects along foundations where they may find their way indoors. Sticky traps along baseboards near entry ways are a good way to reduce their numbers.

 

By Lee Townsend, Extension Entomologist

 

 

Posted in Household Pests