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Pill Bugs (Rollie Pollies)

Pill bugs, also called rollie pollies, are not insects. Like lobsters and shrimp, they belong to the class of crustaceans. They are part of the suborder Oniscidea in the order Isopoda.

These small, oval-shaped, grayish-colored crustaceans are about 13 mm to 15 mm long. Their backs are made up of a softshell. They have 7 pairs of legs and 2 pairs of antennas. There are several different species of pill bugs, but the best-known species is the woodlouse.

Development and Behaviours

The female pillbugs deposit their eggs in their incubator pocket, where they will hatch. They keep their young in this pocket for around 40 days. They can have 24 to 28 offspring whose lifespan can reach two years.

Pill bugs cannot live in dry places; rather, they live in dark, damp places. They live in forests, fields and near water sources. They are found under dead wood, stones, decaying leaves, plants, and stumps. They can also hide in manure or compost. They feed on decaying organic matter.

Sometimes pillbugs enter our properties and hide in the basement or other humid places. When there are a lot of pillbugs inside, there are even more outside.

They are harmless to humans but they can cause a lot of damage to your garden. They reproduce very easily and, in large colonies, they can kill your plants in no time.


Here are some preventive tips to avoid a pill bug infestation:

  • Regularly ventilate the rooms in your house (especially rooms with high humidity!)
  • Call a plumber if you have a water leak. When there are pillbugs inside your house, it is usually due to a humidity problem or a water leak.
  • Pick up dead leaves and dead wood around your home, especially near the ventilation grilles.
  • Make sure there is no debris in your exterior drains and gutters.
  • Seal cracks around your windows and doors.
  • Keep your flower pots away from your windows and doors.


Here are some recommendations to follow if you have a woodlouse infestation:

  • Reduce the humidity in areas where you have seen pillbugs. They often hide in damp, dark places, under stones or in plants. If you don’t water your affected plants as much, they will have a harder time finding a suitable place to reproduce.
    • Use a dehumidifier or fan to lower the humidity in the basement as much as possible and make sure the floor is free from cracks.
  • Frogs, toads, lizards, and birds are voracious predators of pillbugs. Keep this in mind if you have the option of buying artificial bird nests to attract them or if you have a pond on in your garden.
  • Contact a team of professional exterminators to analyze the level of infestation on your property and find the best solution to get rid of this pest quickly and safely!

Our packages that are specifically adapted to humidity-loving insects such as pillbugs can give you peace of mind whether an outside or inside intervention is required. Our certified exterminators will evaluate the situation and implement a safe and effective intervention plan. Contact Vextermination now for all your pest management needs!