With temperatures dropping, it’s finally feeling like winter here in Atlanta, and holiday spirit is in the air. While the colder weather means we don’t have to worry as much about certain pests, like mosquitoes, it’s not a pest-free season by any means. There are actually a lot of pest animals and insects that may decide to take up residence in your warm and welcoming house.
Read on to learn which winter pests to watch out for, and use our winter pest checklist to keep them out. And remember, prevention is the best cure, so contact us to schedule routine pest control in Northeast Atlanta.
The Usual Suspects
You might be surprised at how many pests are actively trying to invade your home in the winter months. These are a few of the most common winter pests in and around Atlanta.
Winter Pest Preparation Checklist
Don’t worry, you don’t have to resign yourself to a winter of scratching noises in the attic and other pest-related unpleasantness. Performing the tasks on this winter pest preparation checklist will help you keep your home pest-free through the holidays and into the new year.
Close or block any openings into your home.
Mice, rats, bats, birds, insects, and even squirrels can fit through surprisingly small openings under the eaves of your roof, around pipes, through vents, under ill-fitting doors, and through areas of damaged shingles, roof tiles, siding, rotten wood, and more. According to UGA Cooperative Extension specialist Michael Mengak, “Mice and rats can enter your house through openings as small as a dime.”
With that in mind, you should examine your home at the beginning of the season and note any areas that need to be sealed. As an added bonus, closing gaps, cracks, and holes around your house will also keep the warm air inside—leading to higher energy efficiency for your HVAC system and lower power bills for you.
- Install chimney caps.
- Cover air vents with wire mesh.
- Caulk openings around pipes, windows, etc.
- Install weatherstripping and door sweeps on exterior doors.
Remove the “amenities” that pests are drawn to.
Most pests are entering your home in search of warmth, water, and food. You can easily remove two out of three to make your home less appealing to bugs and rodents.
- Store food in airtight containers.
- Keep trash cans closed.
- Sweep and vacuum regularly, especially in areas with food crumbs like your kitchen and dining room.
- Store pet food in airtight containers when your pets are not actively eating.
- Keep shrubbery and tree limbs trimmed so there’s space between them and your house. They can be used as bridges for pests to enter your home in less-accessible places like eaves, vents, and chimneys.
- Store firewood away from your home, as it provides a nice hiding place for rodents and insects.