There are over 5000 species of ladybugs worldwide. These insects, also known as ladybird beetles or lady beetles, are common throughout North America. Their appearance varies depending on the species; colors can range from red to orange and they can have spots, stripes, or even no pattern on their dome shaped bodies.
Ladybugs are harmless to humans and are even considered to be good luck in some cultures. They are beneficial to have around as they eat aphids and other plant-eating pests. While they are harmless to us, they can stain walls and furniture in your home and give off an odor.
Ladybugs are most active from spring to fall. Once the weather cools off, they will search for warm, isolated places to overwinter, such as rotting logs, under rocks, or inside our homes. When the weather warms up again, they will emerge from their hiding spots, seemingly taking over the homes they infested.
You can get rid of ladybugs by:
- Sealing them out. Plug any holes in exterior walls, seal doors and caulk around windows.
- Plant flowers. Ladybugs are attracted to flowers and gardens. By providing them with a food source outdoors, they will be less likely to make their way indoors. They do not like mums. Consider planting or placing potted mums near or around the doors and windows of your home.
- Vacuuming. Vacuuming won’t kill them but it will make it easier to get them out of your home. Make sure you vacuum them into a sealed container and then either release them outside or dispose of them.
- Use diatomaceous earth. DE is a powder that dehydrates insects. It is nontoxic to both humans and pets.
- Repel them. Ladybugs dislike certain scents including citronella, citrus oil, cloves, and bay leaves. Spray or place these near windows or other infested areas.
If you have an issue with ladybugs or other household pests, contact your local pest control company for a free evaluation.
During the spring and fall you will often see an influx of ladybugs in your home. While they don’t pose a real health threat to you, they can stain carpets, upholstery, and walls. Why are these pests invading your house and how can you get rid of them?
Ladybugs will make their way indoors in the fall to overwinter in the warm shelter of your home. Once inside, they will hide until the warm weather of spring comes back around. It is at this time they will reemerge to try and return outdoors to reproduce.
Once inside, you will often find them clustered together in the corners of attics and basements or near doors and windows, especially those with large amounts of light. Once they make their way indoors, ladybugs will release a pheromone that signals other ladybugs to follow them.
Although they aren’t harmful, ladybugs can be a nuisance, especially when they invade in large numbers. You can prevent ladybugs by:
- Winterizing your home using weatherstripping on doors and windows, using tight fitting screens, and caulking or sealing any cracks or other potential openings.
- Vacuuming. You can use a vacuum cleaner to safely relocate live ladybugs outside. Put a rag between the dust bag and the hose to catch them, then release them once you get them outdoors. You can also vacuum dead bugs so they don’t stain paint and fabric.
- Using natural repellents to deter them. You can put a small bag of bay leaves or cloves near areas of your home where you often see them gathering. You can also use essential oils sprayed in populated areas to repel them. Some scents include citronella, menthol, peppermint, clove, and citrus.
If your DIY efforts are futile or you just want the help of a professional, contact your local pest control company for an analysis.
Rodents such as mice, rats, and squirrels are overwintering pests, taking refuge inside your home during the colder months of the year. When spring arrives, these pests are already hiding in your attic, basement, crawlspace, garage, and even inside your walls. As the weather warms, they emerge for two reasons: searching for food and breeding season.
Rodents are dangerous to have inside your house for many reasons including:
- Chewing through wiring, drywall, and insulation
- Increasing your exposure to fleas, ticks, lice, mites, and more
- Contaminating your home with their urine and feces
- Spreading diseases like hantavirus, plague, and tularemia
Keeping rodents out of your home during any season of the year starts with prevention. Implement some of these rodent control tips this spring:
- Inspect doors and windows for loose or broken seals and repair or replace them immediately.
- Use screens on doors and windows, especially ones that are opened frequently.
- Seal any exterior cracks or gaps.
- Use mesh screens on chimneys, downspouts, and vents.
- Seal food in canisters with lids.
- Use trashcans with lids.
- Keep your yard mowed and shrubbery trimmed.
- Get rid of any yard debris.
- Keep firewood away from your house.
- Vacuum everywhere, especially where crumbs might be present.
If you have a problem with rodents or any other household pests, contact your local pest control company for a thorough evaluation.
You May Also Be Interested In:
The Differences Between Bumblebees and Honeybees
When Are Termites Most Active?
Common Rats and Mice You Might See this Spring
A Step-by-Step Guide to Spring Lawn Care
Protecting Your Pets from Fleas and Ticks
Despite our best wishes, pests don’t just disappear when the weather gets cold. Winter pest control becomes critical to keeping your house protected during the season. Overwintering pests will make their way indoors to escape the cold and have access to a plentiful food supply. Common overwintering pests include roaches, spiders, and rodents.
Overwintering pests pose a threat to both you and your home. They can chew through wires and insulation, contaminate surfaces and food, spread diseases, and trigger allergies and asthma.
Help protect your home with these 14 tips for winter pest control:
- Seal any cracks, crevices, and holes on the exterior of your home.
- Seal around utility pipes that enter your home.
- Replace or repair weatherstripping and screens.
- Elevate your firewood and store it at least 20 feet from your home.
- Declutter, especially in the basement, garage, and attic.
- Repair any leaky pipes to reduce moisture.
- Keep gutters free of debris.
- Install doorsweeps.
- Install chimney vents.
- Keep attics, crawlspaces, and basements dry and ventilated. Consider crawlspace enclosure.
- Keep floors and counters clean daily.
- Dust, sweep, and vacuum regularly.
- Empty the trash regularly.
- Invest in routine pest control throughout the entire year.
If you have a problem with winter pests, contact your local pest control company for a complete evaluation and treatment plan.
You May Also Be Interested In:
How to Prevent Bed Bugs While Traveling
How Do I Prepare For Termite Treatment?
Rodents to Lookout for this Winter
Why Identifying Spiders is Important for Prevention
Do Roaches Die Off In Winter?
It’s a common myth that spiders come into our homes to overwinter until spring. In actuality, they most likely were already there to begin with. These household pests are more active in fall and early winter for two main reasons: they are preparing winter and the upcoming scarcity of food and they are mating and in search of a partner to reproduce with.
House spiders take up residence in your home year-round. Spiders can be beneficial to have around as a form of natural pest control as they eat other insects (even other spiders) found around your house.
One exception to this is the brown recluse spider. They will seek warmth and food indoors in the winter by hiding out in dark, unused areas of your home. Brown recluses are identified by the distinct violin-shaped mark on their back. They will bite and are considered harmful to humans.
You can prevent spiders in your home by:
- Checking your foundations for cracks and repairing them immediately.
- Checking windows and doors each season. Repairing any cracks and check seals.
- Decluttering, especially in basements, attics, closets, and pantries; this limits the places they can hide.
- Vacuuming and dusting frequently, especially in rooms that are seldom used.
- Checking any items before bringing them indoors, including pets, firewood, plants, boxes, decorations, etc.).
- Investing in routine pest control. Eliminating other pests limits food sources for spiders, leaving them to search other places for a meal.
If you have an issue with spiders, contact your local pest control company for an inspection.
You May Also Be Interested In:
When Does Swarming Season Begin?
Should I Worry About Cockroaches?
What Types of Grasses Work for My Georgia Lawn?
4 Types of Termite Control
Which Season is Worst for Bed Bugs?