With the weather we’ve been having in the Lowcountry lately, it may not feel like winter, but we still have five more weeks of the season until spring comes around. Spells of warmer weather in the winter months can lead to a brief resurgence in insect populations and rodent activity, so winter pest control and general vigilance are especially important in this time of seasonal transition. The following are a few overwintering pests to keep an eye out for in your home:
If you’ve been putting your wood-burning fireplace to work in the past few months, make sure you’re inspecting the wood for insects before you bring it inside. Several varieties of beetles, ants, and the dreaded termites can make outdoor firewood their home. Once they’re inside yours, they may decide to stay.
Spiders tend to keep to themselves, so you may not even realize that you have an infestation until long after it has begun. Just like most other cold-blooded animals, they will seek out shelter and warmth in the winter. Changes in weather can bring them out and send them scurrying to a better hideout. Don’t let that be your crawl space or basement!
Due to the enormous number of eggs that females can lay in their lifetimes, fruit flies are one of the more tenacious and bothersome species of pests. Fruit flies can prosper year-round, so long as they have a place protected from the cold and plenty of food. To keep them at bay, refrigerate ripe fruit that you are not ready to eat, and try to rinse items that you plan on leaving out. Even if your particular food items have no signs of rot, they could have come in contact with other fruits that were later in their ripening schedule.
Rats do become less active in colder temperatures, but that is only the case for those living outside. When it gets warmer, outside rats may use that time to seek out warmer shelters and find their way into your home. Especially if it has been cold and rainy, rats will be driven to warm and dry places. Once inside, they will be as active as they would be outdoors during the summer.
Just like rats, mice seek out sheltered areas that are protected from the elements. They tend to be more curious than their larger relatives, though, which means you will likely see them more often than rats. Even in snowy conditions, mice still may be moving about; their range only expands when the temperatures rise.
If you are struggling with pest control in these winter months, feel free to explore our pest control services and reach out to one of Palmetto Exterminators’ pest professionals for more assistance.