Spring is upon us and with it, come a variety of pests that can become a nuisance to homeowners. From termites to wasps, fleas, carpenter ants, stink bugs and more, it is important to be aware of the types of pests that may start invading your home or garden when the temperatures start to rise. This article will cover the seven most common spring pests and provide tips on how to control them.
What Are The Most Common Spring Pests?
- Termites – Termites are a very common and invasive spring pest problem, because termites tend to swarm in spring and are most likely to start attacking the wood in your home. They are difficult to detect until they have caused considerable damage, so it is important to inspect your home regularly for signs of termite activity.
- Wasps – Wasps also tend to come out of hibernation in spring and start setting up roots around your home. Wasps build nests in inaccessible places, like under the eaves of houses, in attics and basements, and in the walls of homes. Wasps can be dangerous if they feel threatened, so it is important to remove their nests quickly and safely.
- Fleas – Fleas are actually active all throughout the year and are especially problematic in spring when flea eggs hatch after lying dormant over winter. Fleas are easily spread from pets to humans and can quickly infest a home if left untreated.
- Carpenter Ants – Carpenter ants cause structural damage to homes by burrowing into wood and creating nests. They are particularly fond of damp and decaying wood, so they love to nest in bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.
- Stink Bugs – Stink bugs are named for the unpleasant odor they emit when threatened. As the weather warms up, stink bugs become a nuisance as they move indoors, looking for food and shelter. They are known to feed on fruit trees, vegetables, and other plant material.
- Bed Bugs – Bed bugs are especially difficult to detect and eradicate due to their small size and tendency to hide in mattresses, bedframes, and other furniture. Bed bugs are especially likely to invade homes in spring as people travel, bring new visitors, or leave windows open for extended periods of time.
- Mice – Mice are especially likely to invade homes in the spring with rising temperatures. They are attracted to sources of food, warmth, and shelter, making the inside of peoples’ homes very appealing. Mice can cause structural damage as well as pose a risk of disease.
What Damage Can Spring Pests Cause?
Here are some of these common spring pests, their habits and behaviors, and the potential risks and damages they can cause:
- Termites: Termites are notorious for causing structural damage to homes. They feed on wood and other cellulose materials, making them capable of causing tremendous amounts of destruction in a brief amount of time.
- Carpenter ants: Similar to termites, carpenter ants can cause structural damage as they chew through wood to create nesting galleries. Additionally, carpenter ants can contaminate food stores with their droppings and spread bacteria and viruses.
- Wasps: As the weather warms up, wasps come out of hibernation and begin building nests. Wasps can be dangerous when they feel threatened, since they produce a painful sting which can be deadly to those with allergies.
- Stink bugs: Stink bugs are known for the foul odor they emit when crushed or threatened. They can also cause damage to crops and gardens, and are known to feed on fruits and vegetables.
- Bed bugs: Bed bugs feed on human blood, which can cause minor skin irritation and discomfort. In addition, bed bugs can cause severe psychological and health problems, such as anxiety, insomnia, skin rashes, and allergies.
- Mice: Mice can cause significant damage to furniture, walls, and wiring in homes. They can also spread diseases and parasites, and are known to attack and consume stored and freshly prepared food.
What Can I Do To Prevent Spring Pests From Entering My Property?
Here are some ways you can incorporate proactive pest control into your regular spring cleaning routine:
- Take inventory of your home and seal any cracks in the foundation and exterior walls that might provide easy access for pests. Repair torn window screens, clean gutters regularly, and keep food stored in airtight containers.
- Make your home undesirable to spring pests. Keep landscaping neat and tidy, power wash decks and porches, declutter around the house (both indoors and outdoors), and keep kitty litter sealed and away from the house.
- Tidy up and get rid of the clutter that pests love to make into shelter. Make sure to store clothing and linens in plastic containers and vacuum frequently. Consider using natural repellent plants around the perimeter of your property, such as mint and lavender.
Are There Any Natural Methods Of Spring Pest Control?
There are numerous natural methods of pest control available for use in spring. Some popular methods include natural fly traps, essential oil sprays, fresh herbs, coffee grounds, citronella, banana peel, white vinegar, onions, cloves and more. These methods are effective at deterring pests and can be used in or around the home.
What Pest Control Products Are Available To Help Me Get Rid Of Spring Pests?
There are a variety of chemical and non-chemical pest control products available for use in spring. These include insecticides, baits, traps, foggers, and more. It is important to read labels carefully and check with a professional before using any pest control product.
What Health Risks And Other Risks Are Associated With Using Pest Control Products?
Using pest control products can present certain risks, including contact skin irritation, inhalation of toxic fumes, and allergic reactions. It is important to always read the safety instructions and use personal protective equipment, such as gloves and masks, when handling chemical pest control products.
What Tips And Advice Do You Have For Controlling Spring Pests?
The best way to control spring pests is to take a proactive approach. This means keeping an eye out for signs of pest activity, sealing all openings and cracks in the home, eliminating standing water and clutter, and maintaining a tidy home and yard. It is also important to treat the perimeter of your property and use natural repellents in and around the home.
Spring pests can be a nuisance, and it is important to familiarize yourself with the most common spring pests and how to prevent and control them. Taking a proactive approach can help reduce the risk of infestation and keep your home and family safe. Knowing the different types of pest control products available and their associated risks can help you choose the right pest control option for your needs.