Common earwig, European earwig

common earwig or European earwig Forficula auricularia

It may not seem obvious, but the earwig can fly. However, it seems to use this ability only rarely. Forficula auricularia is also known as the European earwig. It can grow from 10 to 17 millimeters long.


Although native to Europe, Forficula auricularia is found almost all over the world.

Earwigs on the leaf of a young plane tree
Earwigs on a leaf of a young plane.

The common earwig lives in meadows, forests, on dams and embankments, in parks, gardens and can also be found in urban areas. For example, in cellars and sheds.

European earwig

Forficula auricularia feeds on fresh and dead plant parts, carrion, smaller insects and other animals.