You might have thought that winter would leave you free of unwanted pests, but that just isn't the case. By now, you've likely stumbled across a few overwintering pests, and chances are you’re seeing more each day. Overwintering pests can be a real issue for homeowners, but they don't have to disrupt your life. Here's what to know about pests that overwinter in the home.
Which pests overwinter in my home?
There are a number of common pests that overwinter, but the following are among those most commonly found in homes as they ride out the cold winter conditions.
A common appearance among overwintering pests, the stink bug feeds on summer crops before making its way inside when the temperatures drop. This invasive species lives in most of the United States and has become a smelly nuisance in homes throughout the country. While most of their lifecycle is spent outdoors, the high number of stink bugs coming inside for the winter can become a hassle for homeowners.
Asian Lady Beetles
Sometimes referred to as the Japanese beetle or Japanese ladybug, the Asian lady beetle is a pest indigenous to Asia. Since their systematic release into the United States in the 60s, these pests have migrated to nearly every state in the Continental U.S. You likely won’t even notice them until the temperatures start to drop. During the fall, you can find them on your sun-facing walls and windows, but by the time winter hits, they’ve probably found a way into your home.
The boxelder bug is another pest that seeks shelter in homes as temperatures drop in the fall. It’s not uncommon to see a whole gathering of boxelder bugs around a home, vetting it as a potential winter hideaway. While they aren’t poisonous, boxelder bugs will release a foul odor if they feel threatened.
How do pests overwinter?
Throughout the fall, overwintering pests will seek out warm spots of refuge that could serve as their potential home throughout the winter. Because of their small size, they’ll easily take advantage of small cracks, holes, or gaps in your siding, foundation, and window screens. If there’s a way in from the cold, they’ll find it! Once in your home, the pests will do everything in their power to stay hidden, safe, and warm throughout the winter. Pests often begin to emerge as their food, water, or shelter begins to dwindle.
What should I do when overwintering pests emerge?
Fortunately, none of these overwintering pests are detrimental to your home or the health of your household. That being said, there are ways to reduce or eliminate their presence:
- Caulk and seal any holes or cracks in the exterior of your home.
- Discard clutter and unnecessary cardboard and paper.
- Seal and store all food and drink items properly.
- Remove pests by sucking them into your vacuum, and then disposing of the contents outside.
- Contact a pest control professional to have preventive treatment done on your home.
If you’re battling pests in the Des Moines area this winter, contact Springer. Our team of pest control professionals can help you effectively eliminate overwintering pests from your home. For all of your pest control needs, trust Springer! Set up your free inspection to get started.