What Every Maryland Resident Ought To Know About Overwintering Pests
Do you know that there is a group of animals that like to get into homes just before winter? They're called overwintering pests. And they may be overwintering inside your Maryland residence right now. Let's take a look at which pests are known to act this way, and what you can do about these unwelcome guests.
These shield-shaped insects with their brown mottled coloration are common pests nowadays. But they weren't always pests in the United States. Brown marmorated stink bugs were first discovered in Eastern Pennsylvania in 1998. Now they are a severe problem throughout the entire Eastern United States. If these pests are in your home, you're likely to find them climbing in your curtains or perching on light fixtures. Aside from the nuisance they cause, they can create an unpleasant smell when they are disturbed or handled. Be cautious when removing them.
During the warm months, boxelder bugs subsist on the resources of boxelder trees and some maple trees. When temperatures drop, they congregate on sun-warmed rocks, and on the sunny sides of homes. As temperatures dip further, they get into cracks and crevices. This brings them inside. If you find oval, black and orange insects clinging to your interior walls, you have a boxelder bug infestation. The concern with these insects is the staining caused by their excrement. They can also create an unpleasant odor when crushed.
Asian Lady Beetles
These pretty bugs look like ladybugs, but they actually aren't. They are far more of a problem than ladybugs because they are far more plentiful. In the fall, they crawl on exterior walls and screens by the hundreds, and sometimes thousands, and find their way in through tiny entry points. They may be red with black dots, like a ladybug, or they may be autumn colors with black dots. This has led some to call them Halloween bugs. If Asian lady beetles are overwintering in your Maryland home, they can stain your belongings with their excrement. They're also known to give a little pinch of a bite.
If you see groups of flies in your home during the winter, they are likely to be cluster flies. Cluster flies are not a health threat like houseflies, which are able to spread at least 65 diseases. Cluster flies don't eat rotting organic material. They eat nectar. During the fall, they get into homes to escape the cold. But as soon as it warms up, they'll head back outside—if they're still alive. The problem many homeowners have with these flies is that they are messy to pick up after they die on window sills or floors.
While rodents aren't technically overwintering pests, they deserve some consideration. Why are they not overwintering pests? Because they can get into homes all year long. Rodents like living in our homes. And, unlike the other pests listed above, mice and rats can usually find an easy meal inside our homes. There is a lot to be concerned about when mice and rats get in. They spread many harmful organisms, from tiny, invisible bacteria to ectoparasites like ticks and fleas.
Control For Overwintering Pests
The best way to deal with overwintering pests is to prevent them from getting into your home in the first place. Entry points in your exterior need to be sealed. Conditions around your home, such as moisture and organic debris must be addressed. Sealing entry points and removing attractants can solve the problem on their own. But these pests can be persistent, especially mice and rats. The best solution is ongoing pest control throughout the year to reduce populations and create a barrier around your home. This is where we can help. For information about residential pest control in Maryland, reach out to us. We know what is required to get control of pests.