It’s winter now and you might be thinking it’s time to relax your home’s defenses. What creatures and critters could possibly invade your home at this time of year? The answer is plenty. When the cold weather comes, many animals seek shelter and they often find it. Mice and rats burrow into your basement, spiders find tiny access holes, and insects find excellent wall space for new nests. Below are some of the common culprits and what to do about them:
Winged Carpenter Ants:
Ants don’t always walk along the ground in neat military rows, sometimes they fly. In a colony of Carpenter Ants there will be several that have wings. These winged ants are useful for collecting soft wood material for the nest. It’s common to find some flying ants in your home during the summer, they might have a nest outside somewhere and are looking for soft wood. However, in winter it means something else. The cold weather should have killed them so there must be a nest in your home. You will need to contact an exterminator.
You should be familiar with cluster flies even if you haven’t heard them called that before. These are the most common species of fly, the ones that you find in your fruit bowl or on the window ledge. Cluster flies are common in the summer but in winter, it could be a problem. Cluster flies may have found a warm space in your home and built a nest that will allow them to survive the cold winter months. You need to locate the nest which you can do by watching the fly’s movements, alternatively, you can contact a pest control service to deal with it.
Everyone loves cartoon mice but not everyone loves the real kind, especially if they’re wild field mice living in your home. During winter you might hear scratching sounds in the walls or catch sight of a small critter dashing across the floor. You may have mice. As the cold weather begins, mice retreat to warmer spaces and often burrow into people’s homes. A sheltered basement, garage, or a loft is the perfect place for them to survive the winter and breed. You can buy humane mouse traps or contact a specialist service.
Rats are very common in the US but that wasn’t always the case. Prior to the discovery of the New World, rats didn’t exist on the continent. They were brought over in ships from Europe and Scandinavia. Fast forward to modern times and rats, wild rats at least, have become a common home invader. Like mice, rats don’t like the cold and retreat to warmer places as the winter approaches. The best places for them to live and breed through the cold months is often in your basement, loft, or walls. If you hear scratching sounds in the walls or ceiling, contact a professional service immediately.
Spiders come in all different shapes and sizes, there are thousands of species in the world and around 3,400 in the US alone. It’s estimated that around one fourth of the human population is creeped out by spiders in some way. Not only that, but they are unhygienic and lay eggs. In the winter, you may have let your guard down when it comes to home invaders but you still need to look out for spiders. They retreat from your outdoor areas inside to escape the frost and can propagate quickly. If you discover you have a spider problem you can have the area professionally cleaned.
No one wants creepy crawlies and critters in their home! Use the tips above if you are dealing with an infestation.
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