Common Earwig

Forficula auricularia


Body length 10 - 15mm. The hind wings are folded beneath the fore wings, which only cover the first two segments of the abdomen. There is a pair of pincers at the end of the abdomen, larger and more curved in the male than in the female. The main colour is dark brown, with some chestnut, and yellowish legs. The only other of the seven British species likely to be discovered at the lagoons is the Lesser Earwig - Apterygida media, which likes to live in compost heaps.


Found in a wide range of habitats where they feed on animal and plant material. The female looks after her eggs and young in a cell in the soil. Often found in the dead heads of roses or other flowers.

Status and distribution

Common and widespread throughout Britain. Common in Nottinghamshire and at Netherfield Lagoons.

Best time to see

All year