European Earwig

earwigs earwig peach damage


All fruit trees; cause damage to peach, apricot


European earwigs overwinter as adults and females lay eggs in the soil in early spring. Populations become active in fruit trees by mid to late June.  Wet, cool springs and summers favor this nocturnal insect.


Adults chew holes in fruit; enter split-pit peach fruits and feed on flesh near pits; produce small black dots of frass (excrement).


Corrugated cardboard “rolls” tied onto the tree trunk can indicate when earwigs start climbing into trees.

Treatment Threshold

No threshold determined.

Degree Day Model

Lower threshold 47°F; summer generation adults are active beginning at 725 DD.

Management Considerations

Protect ripe, soft fruit from damage. Earwigs are also predators on other insects, so their presence at times other than when fruits are ripe can be beneficial.