Believe it or not, some things just will not go away! Even in extreme heat or unbearable cold, some household pests just will not give up. Yes - some pests will invade your home and will not only take up residence, but will actually thrive during the cold season. They're called overwintering pests, and they'll continue to cause problems for you as the months go by. They hide in boxes and storage closets, emerging on a warm winter day or staying in plain site as they enjoy the warmer indoor temperatures.
Insects overwinter by finding a warm place to call home, in many cases this is YOUR home. Bugs will enter structures, mulch, leaves or soil to protect themselves from the low temperatures. Bugs look at your house as their winter vacation home. On occasion, they will make themselves known during the overwintering period by venturing out into the living spaces of a house. Most often, they emerge in the spring time when the temperatures begin to rise. This is a big reason why there is such an increase in visibility of pests in and around your home in the springtime. They’ve been there all along; they just may not have been very active. At Hopper Termite & Pest Control, we have years of experience when it comes to dealing with these cold-hearted, cold-weathered fiends. Here are some pests to be on guard for during the cold months, and some helpful tips to give you the upper hand!
Ladybugs and Asian lady Beetles look similar and feed on plant-damaging insects. Although these beetles are beneficial outdoors, they're nuisances indoors. Some will remain hidden during the winter while others will fly around the room looking for a way outside.
Stink Bugs only live up to their name when they're defending themselves or if you step on them. They emit a foul odor, so it's wise not to kill them indoors. These pests congregate on the sides of your home in the fall and can easily slip indoors to annoy you during the winter.
During the winter, moths and flies survive indoors where it's nice and warm. If moths invade your home, they may breed and produce larvae that feed on your clothing. Flies are annoying no matter the time of year and will only increase in population if you don't eliminate them quickly.
Boxelder Bugs mostly feed on the sap from boxelder trees; however, they will also consume the juices from your house plants during the winter. They are considered a nuisance pest and don't pose a risk to people; however, they have been known to bite for defense. If these pests breed in your home, they'll attack your plants and cause even more problems as spring arrives. Other pests that overwinter include Mice, Caterpillars, Crickets, Flies and Mosquitoes.
Seal or caulk all cracks and crevices around foundation, siding, doors, windows, electrical, and plumbing.
Keep gutters cleaned out. Pests feed and make homes out of the built up debris.
Keep a clean home. Vacuum, sweep, mop, and clean up spills that will attract pests to your home.
Get regularly scheduled pest control with Hopper Termite & Pest. We will prevent bugs from coming in and will make it easier to control any pest problems that arise.
Overwintering pests are a nuisance and difficult to treat by yourself. Some insects, such as stink bugs, will come inside during late fall and find places to hide. Once winter arrives, they emerge and fly around your lamps or crawl along the windows. Hopper Termite & Pest Control professionals will inspect your home for overwintering pests, eliminate them where they hide and help to keep them out all season long. Give us a call today, and we will bring the heat to the cold war on pests!
MAKE THE LIST, CHECK IT TWICE
Now that the days are getting shorter and the wind is getting colder, it’s time to get on the ball and prepare your business and home for the onslaught of winter. Like it or not, insects and rodents are dead-set on infiltrating your space this time of year. Luckily, you have an expert advisor in this fight at Hopper Termite & Pest. We operate from years of experience, hours of on-the-job training, and know how and when to treat your home, business, property.
This blog addresses many things you can do to prepare for winter. This isn’t a complete list by any means, AND we strongly recommend employing our services to seal the deal to treat and/or prevent pest infestation. Hopefully these suggestions will go a long way to help you get ready for the months ahead.home in your house.
The first thing to realize when it comes to pests is that none of them are nice. At different times of the year many pests tend to focus on the outdoors, especially when it’s warm. This is when you may feel they have eased up and jumped on the “nice” list. However, when the cold temps arrive and things begin to freeze up, you will see more activity as they seek the shelter and warmer temps inside. This is when they become naughty little critters!
Along with mowing your lawn, clear dead leaves, fallen twigs and branches, and other lawn debris to keep them from piling up, providing cover for opportunistic pests. You should keep doing this after snow covers your lawn, too.
Insects and rodents commonly use firewood piles as shelter, building nests between logs and returning repeatedly with food for their young. Store your firewood 15-20 feet away from your home, and–if possible–keep it on an elevated shelf or platform at least 5 feet off the ground.
Walk the perimeter of your home. Look for loose mortar, cracks, gaps between screens, and openings around utility lines. Thoroughly patch up these gaps to keep pests from using them to get inside.
Pests that get onto your roof can easily use chimneys or shafts to crawl into your home. Installing a simple mesh screen will prevent this. Get a professional to help you install these screens; working on a roof can be dangerous.
Proper drainage is vitally important for preventing water accumulation. Check roof gutters and clear out leaves and debris. Make sure your sump pump drains properly, and your downspouts carry water far enough away. If your drainage system has any problems, the displaced moisture could attract pests.
You’re halfway done! Obviously, once we’ve shored up our outer defenses, we have to look inward. Any pests stubborn enough not to be deterred by our first line will break on our indoor defenses. Here’s how to make that happen:
No cardboard, no Ziploc bags--we’re talking hard plastic. Store all the food you keep outside of your refrigerator in a secure container that no pest could penetrate. Every pest that gets into your home wants food, so keeping them away from yours is paramount.
Basements are a pest paradise. Clean yours by organizing boxes and other clutter, vacuuming and dusting, and ensuring the humidity isn’t out of control. Even if your basement doesn’t appeal to pests, chances are they’ll get the message and leave you be.
Pests are shy, and they thrive in environments where they can flee into cover easily and frequently. Pests are also small, so for them, cover means just about anything they can get under. Clear out and organize anything that would constitute pest cover to force your fiendish foes out into the light.
Plumbing leaks are a shockingly common source of excess moisture. Check the pipes in your basement and under your plumbing fixtures for leaks, dripping, or condensation. No matter how small a leak is, it will attract pests, so deal with it ASAP.
Winter is the driest season, but humid parts of your home still attract pests looking for a comfortable environment. First, address sources of moisture like drafts, leaks, and puddling. If you’re still struggling with the moisture problem, consider investing in a dehumidifier.
Weather stripping is your home’s final defense against pests. It makes up the threshold between your home and the pests outside. Over time, wear and tear may make weather stripping ineffective. Check out the stripping on each door and window and replace any that looks even a little ragged.
These steps may seem like a lot now, but you’d be surprised how fast you can get them all done. If you get all your pest prevention chores done thoroughly before the snow starts falling, you won’t be surprised by any pests this winter. Trust us! We’ve seen quite a few winters, and plans like this never let us down. Need some hands-on help with your winter prep plan? Want to make doubly sure you don’t have pests and won’t invite them in this winter? Give Hopper Termite & Pest a call today. Together, we’ll throw the pest invaders back where they belong.