Prepare For The Box Elder Bug Invasion

09/03/2015


Box Elder Bugs   

Did you get box elder bugs last year? They can drive you crazy, can't they? When the temperatures drop, you start finding them in mass numbers hanging out on the exterior walls of your house; and when temperatures drop even further, they start trying to get in under the siding and through your eaves. This can be a real problem, especially if they find their way into common areas. Most of the time, they're a nasty mess all over your porch screen and on your back deck, but when they come into the house they can stain your drapes, wallpaper, clothing, rugs, and furniture with their excrement. In no universe is this okay! Here are some ideas for keeping box elder bugs out of your home and off of your exterior walls.

Box Elder Bug Control Methods

  1. Exclusion begins in your yard. There are some things you can do with your yard to make it less attractive to box elder bugs. This is a pest that eats box elder trees, so removing these trees can cause them to look elsewhere for a home. If removing box elder trees is not ideal, consider routinely sweeping up the seeds that fall, and using a hose to spray box elder bugs off when you see them on your trees. If you don't have box elder trees and box elder bugs are coming from somewhere off your property, other control measures will be necessary.

  2. Eliminate hiding places in your yard. These bugs will hide under boards, debris, leaves, rocks, and other natural clutter. If your lawn is trimmed neatly and no harborage can be found, these bugs may continue to the next home.

  3. Seal exterior walls. If you have box elder bugs hanging out on the side of your house, it is important that they do not find a way in. Make sure all your door and window screens have no holes in them. Look closely around window casings to be sure that no gaps or holes are present. Inspect around pipes, outlets, fixtures and other objects that pass through your walls. Examine your basement walls for cracks. Look around air conditioning units for openings. Use window-grade screening to cover attic vents or other places where bugs can get in.

Box elder bugs can choose to fly straight to your exterior walls and never look for harborage in your yard because these bugs are drawn to the south and west sides of brighter colored homes. This is where they will soak in as much sun as they can before winter comes, but eventually, they will be forced to search for a place to hide from the cold. If they are unable to find an entry point, you'll be fine, but the reality is, most homes have gaps and holes on the roofline and where soffits meet your siding. If your home has these, it is important to have a pest professional apply a treatment to your exterior walls. This will have two benefits. You won't have box elder bugs searching your walls for the holes you missed; and you won't have a mass of unsightly bugs covering your home.

With proper lawn care and exterior wall maintenance, you can keep box elder bugs at bay; but to completely secure your home from box elder bugs and other pests, you may need help from a professional. Here at American Pest we have the training and expertise to keep pests from getting inside and ruining your fabrics. Give these tips a shot this fall and be sure to contact your friends at American Pest when you need help with your pest issues.






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