Guard your home against stink bugs, house flies, silverfish and more.
The cool, crisp fall weather is perfect for planting and preparing for next season. But while we’re outside in the garden bed, bugs are heading indoors looking for a warm, safe place to hibernate.
This summer’s record-breaking heat has created a bumper crop of bugs looking for some shelter, according to Ohio State University entomologist David Denlinger. “If the warmth says into the fall, insects will continue to do well until after frost comes,” he says.
Invasive pests like silverfish, spiders, earwigs, flies and ants are typical home invaders once temperatures fall, but there are some new bugs to look out for. In the late 90s, the brown marmorated stink bug, native to Asia, was spotted in Pennsylvania, and the bugs are in 38 states, destroying gardens and landscapes, and spending the winter in homes.
Here are some eco-friendly tips from industry experts and RESCUE! pest control on how to keep the insects at bay this winter:
1. Clean up brush and keep mulch and firewood piles and move them away from the house to avoid creating habitats for critters and insects.
2. Seal up cracks, crevices and holes with caulk or weather stripping around potential entry points and seal around pipes and utilities. Repair loose roof tiles and screens. Inspect windows and basement foundations and repair loose and crumbling mortar.
3. Clean cupboard shelves from loose grain, starch-based and sugary food and place food in sealed containers or plastic bags.
4. Check where stink bugs hide in warm, dark spaces like baseboards, exhaust fans, ceiling tiles and drapes. Pick stink bugs off by hand with a tissue and flush them down a toilet or drop into a bucket of soapy water. If you vacuum, be warned. When threatened, stink bugs emit a foul odor so dispose the bags immediately.
5. If ants are your problem, try herbs. Briscoe White, herb expert and owner of The Growers Exchange, says bay leaves, cinnamon and cloves repel ants indoors and out. Sprinkle dry crushed herbs around points of entry, cabinets and windowsills to create a natural barrier. Plus, peppermint and spearmint are excellent deterrents against both ants and moths.
For help battling bugs, how-to videos and information on RESCUE! traps, visit www.rescue.com.