October 31, 2019
It is fall in the Houston area and that means it is time for fall pests. While fall isn't nearly as cold in Houston as it is in Chicago or New York, it can get too cold for some insects, causing them to go into hiding. When cockroaches and other insects hide inside our homes, mice, rats and other animals that feed on bugs will enter our homes as well. And when mice, rats and other animals get into our homes, they don't come in alone. They can bring ticks and other parasites with them. Are you starting to see the big picture? It all begins with insects that can't tolerate the cold. If you're thinking you can let your guard down as the nights get colder and the days get shorter, you may want to reconsider. Now is the time of year when you should be taking greater measures to keep pests out. Here are some tips and tricks to help you.
When mice, rats, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, and other furry critters come into your Houston yard, they can cause trouble. They can chew small holes in your exterior and make them larger. They can gnaw on wood and make holes where no holes existed before. They can damage your roof soffit intersections and scratch at the seals around your roof penetrations. And, if you think all this is bad, they are even more trouble when they get into your home. The first step in keeping pests out is to let wildlife know that they are not welcome up close to your home.
- Create space between the plants in your landscaping so it is more difficult for animals to hide in your vegetation.
Install fencing around outdoor dog areas, gardens, fruit trees, berry bushes, and other areas you want them to stay out of. You can also use fencing to keep them from getting under your deck, porch, shed and other structures. Make sure to install the fencing at least a foot below the surface. This will prevent burrowing animals from getting under.
- Keep you trash in clean, secure, and sealed trash receptacles. This will prevent smells from attracting the attention of wild animals, keep them from knocking them over, and keep them from getting inside.
- If you have bird feeders, consider putting them away from your exterior walls. Seeds are what mice eat most. A yard covered with seeds is a mouse paradise.
- Some wildlife pests are im-possum-ble to keep out of your yard. They wander in and explore for no reason other than curiosity. There isn't much you can do about them accept keep your lawn cut and your vegetation trimmed. This will let them know that they aren't in the woods or the meadows anymore, and it could influence how long they stick around.
Seal Entry Points
While some pests make their own holes, most will use holes that already exist. This is the time of year to seal up as many holes as you can find.
- Apply caulk around windows, doors, and pipes where gaps have formed.
- Cover exhaust vents and weep holes.
- Make sure your screens are in good shape.
- Patch up cracks in your foundation wall.
- Fix broken mortar, especially around basement windows.
- Install or replace doorsweeps and weatherstripping where needed.
You would be amazed at how much of an impact moisture around a home can have on pest activity. There are many pests that thrive in moisture. While spring in Houston is when we get the most rain, fall is the end of hurricane season and we can still get big storms passing through. All of that water can allow pests to flourish.
- Make sure your gutters aren't obstructed or broken. It is vital that most of the rainwater gets channeled away from your foundation perimeter.
- Make sure you don't have any depressions where puddles can form.
- Remove containers that capture rainwater.
- Trim tree branches to let more sunlight in to dry the topsoil after it rains.
Pest Management in Houston
If you'd like some help with your fall pest prevention, remember that the team at Modern Pest Control is always available to assist you. We use industry-leading products and strategies to help Houston residents maintain pest-free homes and pest-resistant yards. Reach out to us today for immediate assistance. We are here to help you with all of your pest control needs in Spring, TX and the Greater Houston area.