Pillbugs are terrestrial crustaceans, and are more closely related to lobsters, shrimp and crayfish. They even have gills. Adults grow to about 3/8 inch long, have a number of rounded body segments and seven pairs of legs. Pillbugs are capable of rolling into a tight ball when disturbed, a behavior that resulted in their common name,“roly-polies.”
Pillbugs have chewing and rasping mouth parts. They spend bright daylight hours in damp dark habitats such as underneath stones, logs, leaf litter and other debris. At night they venture out and feed on decomposing organic material, including mulch and grass clippings. They will feed on the tender foliage, stems and roots of young garden vegetable transplants, seedlings and bedding plants.