Encounter with the Forficula Auricularia

Steve was having an average day. He was out searching for sustenance, scouring the inside track of a bathroom’s shower door, like any good Forficula Auricularia should. Steve, however, did not reckon with the formidable nature of the female homo sapiens. 

There is no happy ending for Steve.


Today, I found a Forficula Auricularia, commonly known as the Earwig or Pincher Bug, in my shower. I don’t know about you, but when I think of Pincher Bugs, one of the thoughts that rises from the ensuing mental chaos is


Maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, since the common earwig only grows to about 1.3 cm, but Pincher Bugs are scary, guys. According to www.itsnature.org, where I found the lovely image above, Pincher Bugs are “omnivores, which means they’ll eat anything they come across.” Their diet includes carrion. As in the dead creatures that vultures, which are a few hundred times larger than the earwig, also eat. When I happened upon a nest of them while about 20 feet up in my favorite climbing tree about 10 years ago, it was one of the most traumatizing moments of my life.

Today, when I encountered Steve in my shower, I very calmly slammed the door back into place, smashing the bug. When it fell to the ground and started crawling, guts trailing, in the direction of my toes, I emitted a very calm, high pitched sound, then collected the expiring creature and deposited it in a better place.

Since they grow bugs pretty big in Uganda, I probably shouldn’t be too fazed by a little earwig. I should probably, you know, collect them as pets and take a supply to keep by my bed, so maybe cockroaches will be more interested in their delicious crunchy shells … and not my delicious eardrums.


2 thoughts on “Encounter with the Forficula Auricularia

  1. Sounds like an enjoyable summer 🙂
    I hope all goes well for you, I look forward to hearing how it goes.

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