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Identifying Overwintering Pests
Living in Miami means that you’re likely going to encounter overwintering pests at some point or another. Unfortunately, there is little you can do to keep them away from your home, but you may be able to keep them out of your home. Overwintering pests attempt to enter dwellings during the fall so they can stay away from the cold weather, frost, and snow.
Which Pests Overwinter?
Ultimately, there are numerous pests that overwinter. Below, you will find out about some of the most common overwintering pests in Florida, Kentucky, Virginia, and West Virginia.
During the summer, this minor garden pest will stay outside and consume the seeds of maple trees and boxelder trees. When the cold weather arrives, boxelder bugs will create problems for homeowners and rents. They’ll try to enter your home so they can avoid the cold weather. Boxelder bugs are roughly half an inch. Furthermore, they’re black with red marks on their wings. Thanks to their small size, they’ll be able to slip through the small cracks to enter your home.
Although they don’t bite or transmit diseases, staying away from them is recommended. If you crush them, they’ll release a foul odor and leave a stain.
Asian Lady Beetles
Asian Lady Beetles or Ladybugs are another overwintering pest that you’ll have to worry about this fall. When it starts getting cold outside, there is a good chance that they’ll try to enter your home. They’re small so they can climb through the smallest gaps. Although they can bite, it doesn’t happen often. If you crush them, they will release a bad odor.
Naturally, cluster flies live their entire lifecycle outside. They begin life as a parasite inside earthworms. Once they emerge as larvae, they will begin living outside. When the cold temperatures approach, cluster flies will look for ways to stay warm. In some cases, they’ll hide behind loose tree bark. If this isn’t possible, they’ll look to enter your home. As the name implies, cluster flies tend to cluster together. When the temperatures rise, you’ll find a bunch of these flies trying to leave your home. Sadly, there is nothing left to do but to clean up the mess.
Leaf-Footed Pine Seed Bugs
Leaf-footed pine seed bugs are overwintering pests that will frighten you because of their massive size. They’re one of the biggest overwintering pests. They can reach up to three-quarters in length with most being dull-brown. When it gets colder outside, adult leaf-footed pine seed bugs will try to find a way into your home. They prefer staying behind tree bark, but they’ll enter residential dwellings too.
When the temperatures rise, these bugs will leave. They’ll appear in large numbers. Again, their large size will create a stir. The good news is that these bugs aren’t dangerous since they don’t sting or bite.
Brown marmorated stink bugs can reach half an inch in length when they get older. Their back is shaped like a shield so they’re easy to identify. These bugs are native to Asia and recently entered the United States. Since then, they’ve created a big problem for Americans. When it is warm outside, they’ll stay outside and eat vegetables and fruits. If not dealt with quickly, they can destroy a farmer’s entire crop.
When it gets colder, they will try to enter homes and other structures. Although they won’t destroy your home, they will create other problems. For instance, they’re going to release a bad odor when crushed. You can use your vacuum cleaner to rid of them.
Signs Of Overwintering Pests
Are you worried that your home is infested with overwintering pests? It could be. You’ll need to find out so you can tackle the problem as quickly as possible. For starters, you’ll want to turn on your HVAC system and let it warm up. This will convince the overwintering pest that it is warm outside so they’ll leave your home. Then, you’ll be able to see the pests. You’ll also want to check your home carefully. When you find stink bugs, boxelder bugs, and cluster flies outside in spring, you likely had overwintering pests during the winter.
Preventing Overwintering Pests
The best way to deal with overwintering pests is by keeping them out of your home in the first place. For starters, you need to take steps to ensure that your home is properly sealed. Sealing your home will prevent the bugs from finding a way inside. It will help deal with overwintering pests and other household pests.
Below, you’ll find tips for sealing your home.
Screens, Gaps & Crevices
You need to eliminate gaps and crevices as soon as possible. By doing so, you will be able to stop these pests from entering your home. Sealing the gaps will help keep overwintering pests and other household pests out of your home.
Ask About Protective Barrier Treatment
When working with a professional exterminator, you should ask about protective exterior barrier treatments. Professional exterminators will use industrial-strength products to keep pests away from your property. These products have a long life so they’ll continue working for a long time.
Sealing Joints & Other Entry Points
Mortar & Bricks
It is pertinent to fill in the gaps between bricks. There are likely gaps where the bricks meet the wood. You can fill in these gaps using a sealant. Once you’ve done that, the bugs will not be able to climb into your attic.
Be sure to look at your window frames. While the top and sides have likely been sealed, the bottom might’ve been left exposed. If so, bugs will be able to climb through easily. Seal these gaps to keep water and bugs out. You can use caulk to seal this gap.
Fascia & Wooden Clapboards
The area where the fascia meets the wooden clapboard will likely have a small gap. This gap needs to be eliminated to prevent bugs from entering your home. It is best to use a foam insulating cord to seal this gap.
Attic Vents & Soffit
Your vents need to be protected by a screen. If the screen has gaps or holes, it needs to be replaced immediately. Otherwise, bugs will be able to slide through the gaps and enter your home.
You’ll also want to check your utility openings. Your electric cable and plumbing pipes have to enter your home somewhere. If you’re not careful, this will leave an opening and let the bugs climb inside. You can use green pot scrubbers to stuff these holes and keep them out. Furthermore, you’ll want to call us. We offer free inspections so we can help you identify potential problems before they spiral out of control.
What To Use To Keep Bugs Outside Of Your Home
Exclusion materials help keep bugs outside of your home. These products are often sold as pest-proofing products because they keep various pests out of your home. In addition to this, they’ll remain effective around the clock.
Using The Right Materials
It is pertinent to use the right materials when filling the gaps. If the joint will experience movements, you need to use a sealant. If it won’t experience movement, you can use caulk.
Foam insulation is great for filling long gaps. Don’t bother with foam spray insulation because it will make a mess. You’ll want to use aluminum screening to deal with certain gaps. Hardwood cloth will create a heavy-duty screen and help keep bugs outside. Pot scrubbers can be used to fill small gaps.