As the days get shorter, nighttime temperature start to fall. To some pests, it’s a signal that it’s time to find a suitable place to spend the winter. These pests include cluster flies, Asian lady beetles and box elder bugs, and the Midwest will likely soon see the brown marmorated stink bug.
As fall approaches, these pests share a common goal – finding warmth. It is common to find them congregating on the warmer southeast sides of buildings during the day in search of openings that will allow them to enter wall voids and attics to spend the winter.
While these insects typically do not cause structural damage, they can be a real nuisance when large numbers end up inside the structure rather than just in the walls or attic. No attempt should be made to kill these insects once they are inside wall voids or attics as this may lead to a secondary infestation. Dermestid beetles, such as larder beetles or carpet beetles, will feed on these dead insects. Vacuuming is the best way to eliminate the pests once they are inside.
Below are some great nonchemical means for reducing the number of pests that find their way inside.
- Seal all gaps and cracks around windows, doors, electrical entries, utility lines and pipes that enter buildings.
- Seal all gaps and cracks in siding with caulk, such as silicone, elastomeric latex or silicone/acrylic.
- Seal all gaps where different materials, such as brick and wood siding, meet. Expandable foam spray can be used for larger gaps.
- Check soffits, eaves, attic fans and vents for proper seal and screening. Caulk and fine mesh screening should be used.
- Be sure that window screens fit well and do not have tears in them.
- Make sure all doors including the garage door seal properly when closed.
Even after properly sealing the structure, a good preventive measure is to have the exterior of the structure treated by a pest management professional. A properly timed treatment is the key to successfully reducing the population of these overwintering pests.
Contact Guardian Pest Solutions to schedule your treatment or for further information.