Photo by Melody

European Sow Bug (Oniscus asellus)

Order: Isopoda
Family: Oniscidae
Genus: Oniscus
Species: asellus


1 positive
1 neutral
1 negative


This bug has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Prescott, Arizona
Alta Loma, California
El Cerrito, California
Eureka, California
Fortuna, California
Melbourne, Florida
Moscow, Idaho
Round Lake, Illinois
Louisville, Kentucky
Millersville, Maryland
Bridgewater, Massachusetts
Harper Woods, Michigan
Holland, Michigan
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Southold, New York
Raleigh, North Carolina (2 reports)
Grand Prairie, Texas
Clarksville, Virginia
Walla Walla, Washington

By gregr18
Thumbnail #1 of European Sow Bug (Oniscus asellus) by gregr18

By brignac

Thumbnail #2 of European Sow Bug (Oniscus asellus) by brignac

Member Notes:

Positive tenille On Mar 19, 2007, tenille from MOE
Australia wrote:

Slaters are found in cool damp places all over australia.

Neutral Malus2006 On Jan 23, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN
(Zone 4a) wrote:

Sowbugs are the ones that doesn't roll up in a tight ball. They like to hide under litter, prefering the humid conditions. Damages to plants are hardly noticeable - mainly seedlings. They tend to be more common when you add wood mulch or letting nature build up leaf litter in woodland gardens. They also are found in wood piles and weedy spots. They are also more of a northern species than pillbugs.

Negative laurelwillbe On Oct 1, 2009, laurelwillbe from
(Zone 8b) wrote:

Sow bugs get more than half my crop of strawberries every year. We've tried putting down wood planks for them to hide under but they still nibble on almost every berry.

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