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What Do Sowbugs Eat?

Sowbug Food Habits

Moist outdoor environments provide everything needed to sustain sowbug diets. The pests feed on the following:

  • Decomposing grass

  • Wet leaves

  • Mulch and compost

  • Moss

  • Algae and fungi

Sowbugs are omnivores and feed on both decaying plants and animals. These crustaceans also feed on the outer skin of fallen vegetables and fruits.

Additionally, sowbugs eat the roots and stems of some garden plants. While the sowbug diet can lead to damage, it is not likely to kill large amounts of flora.

Comparing Sowbugs and Pillbugs

Sowbugs and pillbugs may be confused with one another. They are both crustaceans and look very much alike. The sowbug diet is similar to that of the pillbug, and the two leave similar damage on plant matter.

  • Neither are insects.

  • Sowbugs eat the same types of food as pillbugs.

  • They are the only crustaceans adapted to living their entire life on land.

During times of danger, pillbugs roll up into a protective ball, while sowbugs do not.

Sowbug Control

Control of sowbugs using chemical products is generally not required. They are far more beneficial than damaging to the overall quality of their habitats.


Dig Deeper on Sowbugs

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Sowbug illustration

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