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Top 5 Common Pests this Winter and 3 Pest Protection Tips

Eager for household pests wriggling into your crawl spaces, basement, or attic in the winter? You don't usually think of getting pest control for the holidays instead of "your two front teeth," but believe it or not, they could be "coming down the chimney tonight" whether you've been naughty or nice.

Who knew these common household pests would be alive enough to move inside? But they do, so today we'll talk about why we get these common house pests in our kitchens and bathrooms of all the weirdest times of the year and three effective measures you can take against them.

Top Winter Pests and Why We Get Them

1. Spiders

All spiders can bite, but none do it quite the same way as black widows and brown recluses. They both pack highly toxic venom, so if you or a loved one receive a bite, take the dead spider with you and seek medical advice right away. Don't worry, very few people have long-lasting effects from spider bites of any kind, though children and the elderly are always the most vulnerable.

Some spiders wander their way inside before the season turns cold and hole themselves up in basements, attics, or crawl spaces, so always check your storage carefully before reaching a hand in that box, bag, or basket. Your house is comfortable for you, so of course it would be comfortable for spiders, fruit flies, ants, and every kind of pest!

2. Carpenter ants

Carpenter ants are a big deal in any home, business, or other building they infiltrate because they use their big jaws to carve wood for tunnels, galleries, and nests. They're tough to eradicate, too, because they can create satellite nests with just workers, eggs, pupae, and larvae, so you could be fighting a satellite nest and killing workers without getting to the source at all: the queen.

3. Mice and Rats

Mice and rats are nasty. They spread diseases, chew on walls, tear up insulation, eat your food storage and pet food, and generally cause enormous amounts of mayhem. Not to mention the droppings they leave everywhere.

These pests come around mainly because of the warmth, but because of their unique bone structures, they can squeeze into spaces as small as 1/4 or 1/2 inch across!

4. Cockroaches

Cockroaches contaminate food and water and spread all kinds of diseases, and even though they evolved from tropical areas, they've found a way to stay alive in colder places, too. The problem is, roaches are so hardy and eat so many kinds of food, they’re tough to get rid of, but they can’t evolve a way to be soap-proof! (See below for details).

5. Bed Bugs

If you've ever had bed bugs, you know what a nightmare they are, so always check seams in mattresses and box springs before sleeping in a hotel or other new place. If you see black pepper dots or crumbs that look like insects, don't sleep there because those are signs of bed bugs or cockroaches, and anyone would do anything to prevent an infestation of either of those monsters.

3 Pest Protection Tips

1. Entry Point Elimination

Universal and easy things you can do to protect your home are to use silicone caulking to seal cracks around doors, windows, and sill plates, and install working door sweeps. Keep rodents from coming inside with copper mesh, steel wool, and steel mesh that has a 1/4 inch gauge, because they can chew through silicone caulking if they are desperate enough.

2. Hiding Places and Attractants

In addition to sealing those cracks, store firewood at least 20 feet from the home along with compost piles and garbage dumpsters, trim shrubs from the house siding, and remove fallen branches and other debris. Prevent rodents from smelling food sources by sealing your food in airtight containers. Consider purchasing an automatic vacuum system that can run at night when most of these pests are active.

3. Immediate Action

To get rid of insects on your own, mix water and dishwashing soap that has grease-fighting components and use it to spray roaches, bed bugs, spiders, or anything with an exoskeleton. Mice and rats can be caught with snap traps and bait traps, but we recommend consulting a professional as well.

Take it from the Professionals

Fox is the best pest control company that can provide the peace of mind you crave. Our Home Protection Plans and family- and pet-safe products are effective against these monstrosities. Plus, we've got excellent and friendly customer service operators ready to answer the phone.

Our Pest Pro Technicians provide pest control services uniquely suited to your needs. So call today for a free quote or free inspection and make your home safe and comfortable again.

Posted on January 17, 2020.

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