When the cool fall air arrives, some bugs, insects, and other pests seek the warmth from inside homes or hide in dark spaces like basements, attics, and garages. Here are some creepy crawlies you should watch out for, and some ways to prevent them.
Few people welcome the sight of spiders inside the home. During the fall, spiders of all kinds get a little stir crazy because this is their mating season. They literally come out of the woodwork in search of a mate, seeking out places to nest for the winter so they can lay next year’s generation of eggs. To help prevent them from settling in your house, remove webs promptly and turn off exterior lights at night. Lights attract insects, which in turn attract spiders searching for food. Be careful when reaching in crawlspaces, attics, and basements to pull out the Halloween and holiday decorations. It’s also a good idea to shake out decorations that are hollow and to be careful digging in boxes just in case any spiders are lurking.
Mice, Rats, Squirrels, and other Rodents
These pests might make their way into your home as the weather turns cold for the same reason that some insects do. When it gets cooler, rodents will seek shelter indoors where they can remain warm, comfortable, and fed until spring emerges. Rats and mice are very talented when it comes to finding cracks or holes which they can use to enter your home. In the cooler months, rats and mice will use their whiskers to detect from where hot air is escaping. Once they determine where the hot air is coming from, they will then sneak into the crack or crevice. If they are not able to find any cracks, holes, or gaps, they will use their teeth to chew through any weak materials as a way to get inside.
When fall arrives, stink bugs seek indoor shelter and enter homes through any cracks they can find. Even though they don’t bite humans, squashing one will release an unpleasant odor. Stink bugs tend to gather in large numbers and they attract other stink bugs. Once they infest a home, they’re hard to get rid of. Vacuuming them up will help, but the best thing you can do is to make sure screens are free from rips and tears and to fill in any cracks.
As weather cools down and fall kicks in, cluster flies seek the warmth and shelter of homes. This allows them to survive during the winter. Because cluster flies resemble houseflies, it is easy to confuse the two. Some cluster flies will remain out of sight in an attic or wall, while others may infest your living spaces. What happens if you find these pests inside your home? Well, one of the most effective ways is to simply vacuum them up. This can be tricky depending on where they are hiding, and while it may help temporarily it is best to make sure you aren’t dealing will an infestation.
General Tips for Getting Rid of Most Fall Pests
- Make sure there are no holes in your screens. Many of us like to open windows during the fall season and bring in the cool air, so holes in screens are just one way to invite the creepy crawlies of fall inside your home.
- Place screen vents on chimney openings.
- Locate and seal any cracks you find inside and outside of your home including around windows, in basements, and your home’s foundation. Pay close attention to areas near outlets, ceiling fans, and baseboards as well.
- If you are stocking up on firewood for the winter season, keep the firewood pile at least 20 feet away from your home. Insects and spiders love the warmth and dark of wood piles.
- Call a professional exterminator if you can’t rid your home of any infestation.
Fall bugs and insects are part of nature, but it’s best to avoid them. Perform inspections, deep clean your home, and watch for signs of active infestations. Don’t let these problems persist. By being vigilant and proactive you will get to enjoy the fall season instead of its many pests. Good luck!