Pest Prevention For Every Season: Fall Edition
There are many reasons that insects and wildlife want to live inside our homes. For most, our homes provide a seemingly never-ending food source. Some pests feed on our food sources and our garbage such as rodents, pantry pests, and cockroaches, while others find their food in other places. Termites can feed on a home for years without running out of food to eat. Carpet beetle larvae can feed on carpets, drapes, and tapestries to their heart's content. Pests will eat the glue on wallpaper, nibble on books and important documents, and even chew a hole in a wedding dress that has been passed down from generation to generation!
If some of the food sources listed above surprised you, be prepared to be surprised again. You could live inside a barren, concrete home with absolutely nothing inside but two concrete blocks to sit on, and pests could still find things to eat. You can probably think of them on your own, but we'll help you out. Some pests feed on our blood. That means, you still have the food they're searching for. But, another food source that is often overlooked is the pests themselves. When flies come into your home, spiders are sure to follow!
In this Fall Edition of our ongoing Pest Prevention for Every Season series, we're going to focus on one pest that feeds primarily on pests and two that can be found feeding on our food sources. Obviously, prevention for each of these pests will be different. However, you should also be able to use these prevention tips for similar pests as well.
We have lots of spiders that can be found in our extensive service area. Most of them aren't going to do much more than leave you with you an itchy red welt on your skin. However, there a couple of dangerous spiders that can be found in our area. The two venomous spiders to watch out for in Texas are the brown recluse spider and the black widow spider. To help deter both venomous and non-venomous, follow these tips:
- Remove webs. Not all spiders create webs, but the ones that do can be deterred if you remove their webs routinely.
- Keep woodpiles away from your home. All spiders love to hide and build their webs in stacks of lumber. If you have construction materials or some other wood or brush pile on your property, move it at least 20 feet away from your home.
- Keep leaf litter and sticks raked up. By cleaning up this debris from your yard, you will reduce insect activity. This will reduce spider activity as well.
- Examine your exterior doors. Spiders can easily slip underneath exterior doors. Inspect your doors to make sure you have working door sweeps where they are needed.
- Examine weather stripping. Again, spiders can find their way inside under or around sliding glass doors. Examine your sliding glass doors and make sure they're in good condition.
- Inspect your screens. Spiders can gain easy access inside through rips and tears in window and door screens. Make sure to inspect them regularly and repair any damages found.
- Do a detailed inspection of your home’s exterior foundation and walls. Fill in any holes and patch gaps found in your exterior walls and foundation. If you see openings that can be used as an entry point such as a vent, cover those openings with screens.
- Reduce moisture. Moisture often collects around foundation walls. To reduce insects and spiders, make sure to take measures to reduce moisture and water damage.
- Replace exterior white bulbs with yellow bulbs. These do a better job of resisting insects and the spiders that love to eat them.
Rodents and Raccoons
There are many wildlife animals that often find their way into our Texas homes. The two most common are rodents and raccoons. The main way to resist pest animals any time of year is to reduce the attractants around and inside your home.
- Make sure exterior trash is in sealed receptacles and routinely clean those receptacles to reduce odors that lure pests to your home.
- Put fencing around any permanent food sources on your property such as a vegetable garden. Make sure that the fencing goes down at least a foot into the ground to prevent rodents from burrowing under it.
- Keep fruit trees away from exterior walls.
- Keep stacked woodpiles away from the exterior of your home.
- In the case of raccoons, be sure to keep all windows on the second and third story of your home locked.
- Seal the underside of decks, porches, and other structures with fencing to prevent harborage.
- Inspect exterior walls and seal gaps or entry points. Bear in mind that most mice can squeeze through a gap the size of a dime and can chew small holes to make them larger, so it is important to seal even the tiniest gaps.
For protection against pests including spiders, rodents, and raccoons in the fall or any other time of the year, consider investing in ongoing pest control from a trusted professional! When you have routine inspections and treatments performed by an educated pest professional, you get control of all the common pests in your area, all year round!
If you live in Houston, Katy, Cypress, or the surrounding area, get started with our residential pest control by giving us a call today!