As the temperatures start to drop, these critters may look for a warmer place to live. They need a home with plenty of food, a source of water, and a place to crash. Your house is perfect! Be on the lookout for these insects and animals so you can head them off at the door, or wherever they crawl in.
Even people with immaculate homes may see several species of these bugs in the pre-winter months. Cracks in walls, sewage pipes, and drains are a few ways they can enter your home, but if they’ve nested in an object, you might give them a lift. Common stowaway items are cardboard boxes, paper bags, and old furniture. When you bring in firewood, be careful to check for hitchhiking bugs. Although, to be fair, maybe the roach didn’t want to tag along. They are scavengers and will eat almost anything.
Roaches are known to spread diseases to humans. Make sure that dirty dishes and food sources such as pet food aren’t available to them. The rule of thumb for gauging the seriousness of a roach problem is that if you see a roach during the day, it’s likely a severe infestation. There’s a chance that the roach was forced out into the daylight by overcrowding in the darker hiding places. There are multiple types of baits, sprays, and natural remedies on the market designed to get rid of roaches. The exterminator is another option, and may prove to be the most cost effective remedy of them all.
These tiny reptiles aren’t really pests, but they are uninvited guests. Sandy beige in color, they blend in well with brick and mortar walls. If it gets too cold for them, they can go into hibernation mode, hidden in foundation cracks and wall crevices. Nocturnal by nature, they are rarely seen in the day. These super fast lizards can usually outrun humans and house cats. The average house gecko eats 3-4 insects per day, so they do try to pay their rent.
To rid the house of geckos, cut back their food supply. Since they only eat live insects, if you have geckos, you must have bugs. Common culprits are crickets, roaches, house flies, and fruit flies. With no food available, these gatecrashers will take the hint and move on, like Uncle Joe.
Mice and Rats
Many types of mice gladly trade the chilly pumpkin patch for the warm indoors, and their larger cousins would rather live in the comforts of your home, too. These animals can cause major damage in relatively little time by chewing through wires, nesting in furniture, filing their teeth on woodwork, and helping themselves to previously unopened food containers. Leaving prolific deposits of droppings behind is another down side to these roommates.
Since these pests spread disease among humans, their presence cannot be ignored. Among the options for traps are versions that kill, and those that don’t harm them at all. Poison baits and traditional spring action traps can hurt house pets and small children, and large rat traps can break a finger or toes. Calling in an expert is a more expensive method of throwing these pests out of your home, but at least you don’t have to come into contact with the rodents yourself.
Yellow Jackets and other Wasps
These stinging insects are extremely active in autumn. They have a particular fondness for sweets, especially soda or beer, but they also eat many types of insects. You are most likely to encounter these pests in the garage, a garden shed, by the gazebo, or other outdoor structures. They are aggressive and take defending their territory seriously, even if your name is the one on the mortgage.
Evicting these squatters yourself may be dangerous. Many people are allergic to their venomous stings. The allergy may vary from mild to quite severe. It is best to call in an expert to remove the nest and break up this party. Meanwhile, make sure there aren’t uncovered garbage cans or compost heaps near the house. Also, be sure to rinse cans and bottles before putting them in the recycle bin.