It’s winter here in Southeast Tennessee. While we mostly think of pests lingering around during the spring, summer, and fall months, they can actually be quite active during the winter as well. You probably won’t find yourself swatting away mosquitoes in January, but you very possibly could find yourself face to face with these three common winter pests.
Ants are resilient little survivors. They like to find find places to overwinter that are protected from the typically extremely cold temperatures. In fact, ants are able to withstand sub-zero temperatures in the Northern United States and even into parts of Canada. Winters in the Southeastern United States are usually pretty mild most of the time and typically present no real challenge to the ants for survival. However, as it gets colder outside, the ants move inside through cracks in walls, doors, and windows, and they even make nests in wall voids.
Moreover, you may not be aware of how many ants are in your home this winter because they usually come out to feed, only as needed. Ants have different dietary needs. For example, at times they need sugar and other times they need more protein. This dictates where they feed and how often. Many people will see ants one day, and then they may seem to disappear for a few days at a time. Don’t be fooled, however. Good chances are that the ants are still inside of your home hiding out. The other part of the time, they spend in their colonies and “out of sight out of mind” as the old saying goes.
Spiders like to hide in dark, undisturbed areas. Some of those places in and around your home could be basements, garages, sheds, attics, closets that aren’t frequently used, and many more places! They feed mainly on smaller insects, and sometimes even on other spiders.
Spiders too, will avoid the cold by finding a warm place to overwinter. They are content as long as they have a food source and temperatures that remain above freezing. This explains why spiders are frequently spotted in homes during the winter months. The abundance of food from the holidays and warm, dry temperatures are pretty much a spider’s dream destination to overwinter.
Lady beetles spend the warm spring and summer months feeding on the foliage in trees and shrubbery around your home. When it turns cold outside, they move to the sunny side of your home to get warm where they enjoy sunbathing.
Moreover, as it gets closer to winter and the temperatures begin to drop, they find cracks and crevices around your home and move inside your attic and wall voids. They hang out there all winter long. As they get hungry, they will move into the living spaces in your home in search of food just like the other two pests we have discussed. Many times they go to the windows, attracted by the light, and try to escape back outside.
Still Have Questions?
Whether or not you have come face to face with any of these common winter pests, there’s a good chance that they are somewhere around your house right now. Now that you know more about what attracts them to your home, you can take active steps to keep them outside this winter. Some of those active steps include not leaving food out on counters or in pantries without properly sealing, and checking the perimeter/exterior of your home for cracks and crevices where they may enter.
If you have any questions about these winter pests, just give us a call. We would be happy to help answer any questions you might have.