Many people make the assumption that most pests die off in the winter months when it gets too cold. In actuality though, cold weather motivates winter pests to seek shelter. They love seeking the warmth of your home because it is perfect for breeding. As temperatures begin to cool, snowfall in the north and more rain in the south provides the perfect conditions for pest infestations coming into your home. Do not be the misguided homeowner that takes comfort in the belief that the colder season will reduce the need for house pest control.
Unwanted “friends” to be on the lookout for:
1. Spiders These eight-legged crawlers will hide out in firewood that you will bring inside this time of year. Be sure to inspect each piece before bringing it into your home. We recommend never handling some species of spiders yourself, such as the brown recluse and black widow. Call to hire a professional if you spot even a single brown recluse or black widow spider because if you see one, you may in fact have dozens.
2. Rodents + Mice These creatures can actually feed and breed more while wintering inside your home. Be aware and on the lookout for rodents and mice. If you do not realize they’re in your home at all until next spring, it may take a greater effort to get the situation under control.
3. Carpenter Ants These pests are also brought inside when you bring in wood to build a fire. The cold weather freezes them, so they cannot jump off when you pick up the wood. Once inside, the carpenter ants thaw out and start wandering your home. Many times the ants will search out a warm and humid space. This may lead them to make a home for themselves within your walls which could lead to a serious infestation.
4. Occasional Invaders — Ladybugs + Stink Bugs Although they are essentially harmless, these invaders will come in large numbers to survive the cold. If you see one inside your home, you can be sure there are many more living nearby. These large groups may create an oder, and if there are a mass in your attic for example. This could attract other insects and animals that feed on them. The best way to deal with an infestation of these is through prevention. Some methods include sealing and caulking entry points or vacuuming them out.
In the long-term it is easier and less expensive to be aware and keep a handle on your pest situation. This will prevent you from a more expensive fumigation or other drastic pest control methods after you realize the true scope of the problem. This year don’t even consider putting your pest control service subscription on pause during December, January, and February. Remember that it can cost far more in the long run due to unchecked pest damage. These unwanted pest friends will continuously attempt to gain entry to the warmth of your home… You should remain equally active in kicking them back out into the cold.