Common Late Fall Insect Pests to Watch For

12/12/2018


Home Pest Control   
a stink bug on a wall

Most of the time, we associate pest problems with summer. While summer is definitely the time of year when most pest infestations happen, they can pop up any time of year, even in the winter. This is usually because they start forcing their way into our homes during the fall months.

Have you seen pests in your home during the fall? Name three bugs that bug you in the fall. Were springtails, box elder bugs, or stink bugs on your list? If so, it isn't surprising. These are common pests in late fall because they hide from the cold as winter approaches and hunker down until warmer weather returns. This process is called overwintering. And it can sometimes cause bugs to get into our homes.

Springtails

It can be disconcerting to find hundreds of tiny, springing pests in your basement or, worse, in one of the common areas of your home. It can make you think you have a flea infestation, and those are definitely no fun to deal with. But a springtail infestation isn't anywhere near as bad as flea infestation. Springtails won't bite you and they won't make you sick. They feed on algae, fungi, mold, and mildew, not blood. But they can become a nuisance when they congregate in your bathroom or some other room with high humidity.

When springtails appear in a home, they can be a warning sign of water damage. If this is a common fall pest for you, it is definitely time to call a handyman and have your home checked for any damage that may be letting moisture into your walls. Sealing those holes will prevent that water damage from continuing, and it will help you keep more heat in your home during the winter months.

Box Elder Bugs

Have you seen black and orange, oval-shaped bugs grouping up on your exterior walls? Have you seen them crawling on your deck and clinging to your screens? Do they find their way inside and crawl around in your curtains and cling to walls? Then we don't have to tell you how irritating box elder bugs are. Fortunately, they are not known to spread diseases to people and they rarely bite. The biggest issue you'll have with these insects is that they can stain your belongings with their fecal matter and they can produce an unpleasant odor.

Stink Bugs

When these brown-colored, shield-shaped bugs get in, it stinks. Just like those box elder bugs, they'll crawl in your curtains and cling to your walls. They'll also perch on your light fixtures and sometimes dive bomb you as you pass by. Worst of all, they make a bad smell if they are stepped on or disturbed. This smell is what inspired their name.

The Solution For Overwintering Pests

Before these bugs get in, it is important to take measures to keep them out. Here are a few ways to get that done:

  • Do a detailed inspection of your foundation walls and repair any gaps or cracks you find.
  • Inspect around your door and identify any gaps. Fix or replace weather stripping to allow the door to seal properly. If your door is ajar, it may need to be adjusted so that it makes a solid contact all the way around.
  • Replace or repair damaged screens. When you do, inspect the interior of your window frames for holes created by other bugs. Overwintering pests will exploit entry points made by wood-damaging pests such as carpenter ants, termites, and rodents.
  • Examine your exterior walls, especially around windows, and seal any holes you find. Your screens aren't the only place you can have entry points. Sometimes holes and gaps can form in screen frames. These can be patched with some tape for a temporary fix.
  • Be aware that overwintering pests can get into your eaves, soffits, roofline, vents, exhaust, chimney, and other entry points that are high on your home. They'll also get into holes created by squirrels, rats, bats, and other wildlife. Do an inspection of your roof if possible.

Sealing your home is an important first step for keeping overwintering pests out in the fall, and other pests out all year long. To increase your chances of keeping pests out, consider investing in a barrier treatment. When you have a pest professional treat the foundation perimeter of your home, it makes it much more difficult for pests to get in. It also reduces the amount of activity you'll see on your outside walls and screens in the fall. And that's a good thing. Those overwintering pests can be a nuisance before they even get into the house.

If you live in DC, Maryland, or Northern Virginia, let the team at American Pest help you keep those bugs out. We offer both one-time and ongoing pest control services that will target the pests you want targeted.  






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