How to Deal with Winter Pests Safely

Do you know how to deal with winter pests safely? Winter is the season for staying inside and getting cozy on the couch. Few things can beat whittling away the winter days while knitting, watching films, and drinking warm beverages.

However, you aren’t the only one who enjoys central heating and cozy rugs. Winter pests like to move in when the temperatures start to drop, too.

 

How to Deal with Winter Pests Safely

Taking care of winter pests before they become a major issue is key. You’ll need to take a proactive approach to any signs of unwelcome intruders or risk spending months trying to get rid of spiders, cockroaches, and mice.

How To Deal With Winter Pests Safely
Picture of a Squirrel

 

1. Identifying Common Winter Pests

Most pests are best known for their activity in the spring and summer. Flies, moths, mosquitoes, and slugs love the warmer months and will be itching to get inside and enjoy your home. However, other animals only seek indoor shelter when the weather truly takes a turn for the worst. Common winter pests include:

  • Rats
  • Mice 
  • Spiders 
  • Wasps and bees

Small rodents don’t hibernate through winter and can’t rely on natural defenses to keep them warm when temperatures drop. Instead, they seek shelter in warm nooks and crannies like your attic.

This makes sense, as like humans, changes in winter weather affect their respiratory systems and put them at heightened risk of common infections.

Spiders, however, are adapted to live in the cold and store anti-freeze in their body. This means they’re likely to wait out the winter in places like cupboards while shielding their eggs until the temperature rises.

Wasps take a similar approach to the winter and stow themselves away in quiet places like lofts. They’ll use this time to lay eggs and start building their homes. This can turn into a serious issue if left unchecked as the larva springs into life when the winter draws to a close.

 

2. Pre-Winter Audit

The best way to keep pests out is to ensure they can’t get in. This proactive approach to pest control is the best way to keep your family safe and preserve the integrity of your home.

When looking for potential issues, start with simple changes that come as recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency:

  • Look for cracks and holes. Small rodents can squeeze through tiny gaps. 
  • Fix leaky plumbing, and do not let water accumulate anywhere on your property.
  • Close off spaces where pests might hide with caulk and steel wood fill.
  • Put out pesticides in safe places away from children and pets.
  • Don’t overuse pesticides, as they can harm your health.

Try to get inside the minds of winter pests when auditing your home. You know, for example, that winter affects your health by drying out your skin and draining your energy. Pests can change their habits during the winter season as they seek out warm and dry places to seek refuge. 

 

3. Everyday Tasks

Insects and rodents have finely tuned senses designed to sniff out the slightest trace of leftover food. This means you have to take care of your home and deal with dirt, leftovers, and wood stacks before they become infested with pests.

Start by maintaining your yard. Move firewood well away from any walls, and keep your waste at least 6 feet from your home. This reduces the risk of pests following a trail of food and warmth from your garden to your home. Thoroughly appraise your walls and caulk any cracks you find.

Make sure you dress appropriately for winter when completing outdoor tasks and home maintenance. Opt for down-filled or insulated jackets, and pull on a pair of thermal socks.

This will help you work longer outside and ensure that you follow through on important jobs before heading back inside to get warm.

 

4. Pest Control

Even the most diligent of homeowners can experience an infestation of pests in the winter. Rodents and small insects can slip into the house through minuscule gaps and make a real nuisance of themselves in no time. 

When this happens, bring in professional help as soon as possible. You can’t let pests get comfortable, as your unwelcome guests will start chewing through cables, eating wood, and making a mess of your house.

Prompt pest control is particularly important if you have a pet, as they’re almost certain to get bitten or scratched if you delay. If you’re concerned about the well-being of rats or mice in your home, consider bringing in a pest control professional who offers relocation services.

These professionals know how to capture and release pests while causing the least harm to the animal. They’ll make sure any animals they capture are let go far from your home, too, meaning you won’t have to worry about repeat visitors making an appearance.

 

Conclusion

Winter pests like rats, spiders, and mice can wreak havoc on your home and jeopardize the health and well-being of your family. Deal with these unwelcome animals by taking preventative measures before the winter months roll around.

Seal up cracks in your home and caulk any holes that you find. Put out some pesticides, and don’t hesitate to call in professional help if you notice the signs of an infestation.

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