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  • Maritime Earwig - (Anisolabis maritima)

    Maritime Earwig - (Anisolabis maritima)

    Maritime Earwigs live by the ocean, but they don't go in the water. They work the coastline, sweeping the sandy beaches for food.

    Picture of Maritime Earwig

    Staff Writer (2/11/2014): The habitat of the Maritime Earwig is uncommon for most insects. The close proximity to bays and the coast would be risky considering insects usually drown if they get caught in water. This species does not swim, but it hunts along the wet sand for insects to eat. They hunt at night, walking the beach for small insects, their eggs and any dead arthropods that drifted onshore. It is most often seen in areas around high tide, making it almost seaworthy for an insect.

    Females will lay their eggs under driftwood or pieces of bark found on the sand. They guard these burrows and, when the eggs hatch, they feed their young until they reach maturity and leave.

    This hardy little insect is active as long as the temperature isn't below freezing. They can tolerate cold that most other insects take shelter or die from.

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    Details of the:
    Maritime Earwig

    Category: Earwig
    Common name: Maritime Earwig
    Scientific Name: Anisolabis maritima
    Other Names: Seaside Earwig

      Kingdom: Animalia
       Phylum: Arthropoda
        Class: Insecta
         Order: Dermaptera
          Family: Carcinophoridae
           Genus: Anisolabis
            Species: maritima

    Size (Adult, Length): 16mm to 25mm (0.63in to 0.98in)

    Identifying Colors: brown; orange; black

    Additional Descriptors: pincers, segmented

    North American Reach (Though Not Limited To*): Florida; California; Maine; Maryland; New Hampshire; New York; New Jersey; North Carolina; Oregon; South Carolina; Virginia; Washington; British Columbia; Ontario; Quebec; Mexico

    * Keep in mind that an insect's reach is not limited by lines on a map and therefore may appear in areas/regions/states beyond those listed above.