Where Do Pests Go in the Winter?

Rodent in the snow-United Pest Solutions, serving Seattle WA talks about where pests go in the winter.

Rodent in the snow-United Pest Solutions, serving Seattle WA talks about where pests go in the winter.As temperatures drop and weather conditions become harsher, wildlife goes into survival mode. Some animals migrate, some hibernate, and others have unique traits that allow them to endure months of cold.

But, where do all the pests go during winter? Though it may seem like they simply die off, many insects actually have survival tactics that allow them to withstand freezing conditions. Here are what some common pests do during winter.

Ants

Ants are incredibly common during the summer, but it’s rare to see them once winter rolls in. That’s because ants use a special survival tactic called diapause, which is very similar to hibernation. During diapause, the ant’s body fills with a substance called glycerol that keeps them from freezing.

Ants prepare for diapause over the summer by eating in a surplus to gain fat, which allows them to survive when food is scarce. Then, as the cold sets in, the ants will begin to slow down and gradually become less productive. When temperatures are low enough, the ants will close off the colony and remain underground until warmer weather arrives.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are a common household pest that are incredibly resilient. Even the cold of winter isn’t enough to cause these pests to go into survival mode, because their bodies can withstand temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit for a few days before dying.

Since bed bugs are so hardy, they are pretty much a year-round problem. Freezing temperatures aren’t enough to keep these pests away, and our homes make the perfect environment for them to thrive no matter the season.

Cockroaches

Cockroaches are known for their incredible ability to survive even the harshest of conditions. However, these pests are typically drawn to warmer climates with more humidity. Many types of cockroaches – such as the German cockroach or the American cockroach – will migrate to warmer spots when winter sets in.

Unfortunately, as cockroaches search for a warmer place to stay, they may end up inside homes, offices, or industrial buildings. Homes are more susceptible to a cockroach infestation over the winter, as they often provide the perfect mixture of warmth and moisture for these pests to flourish.

Fleas

Fleas are known for piggybacking on your pets, causing an itchy or painful reaction for anyone who’s bitten. While the cold weather certainly slows these pests down, fleas can still be an issue during the winter – especially if they can hitch a ride into your home.

Fleas thrive in warmer areas with a little bit of humidity. Around 75 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal for them, which makes your house the perfect spot for them when winter rolls around. Continuing to treat your pets and watch for these pests can help keep your home flea-free, no matter the season.

Mosquitoes

As bothersome as mosquitoes can be during the summer, they seem to disappear as soon as winter comes around. During the colder months, many mosquitoes do actually die off. So, how do they come back year after year?

Right before everything freezes over, female mosquitoes lay their eggs in still bodies of water. The eggs only need about half an inch of water to survive, and they are hardy enough to endure harsh winter weather. So, even though mosquitoes aren’t a bother during winter, they always make preparations to come back in the spring.

Pest Control During the Winter

Since so many pests seek a warm and cozy home for winter, it’s still important to keep your eye out for an infestation even when it’s cold out. If you’re struggling with pests during the winter, a local pest control company like United Pest Solutions may be able to help! From thorough inspections to quick extermination, our experts have been serving the Seattle metropolitan and Puget Sound area since 1960. Give us a call to keep your home pest-free, without the hassle!

How to Help Prevent Fleas This Spring

Dog outside in the grass. United Pest Solutions, serving Seattle WA talks about how to help prevent fleas this spring.

Dog outside in the grass. United Pest Solutions, serving Seattle WA talks about how to help prevent fleas this spring.Spring has sprung and so have fleas! If you’re a pet owner, you may have encountered fleas at least once in your life. Although they’re not dangerous, they are a nuisance, especially for pets.

Considering you and your pet may be enjoying the outdoors more now that the temperatures are warming up, we at United Pest Solutions have come up with some helpful tips to help you stay flea-free this spring.

Flea Medication

There are several options available when it comes to flea and tick prevention for your pet. Talk with your veterinarian and find the best option for your needs and budget. Popular choices include topical drops, flea collars, and oral medications. Regardless of which flea medication you opt for, make sure you apply it correctly and regularly. Most flea and tick medications last between 30 to 90 days or even 8 months.

Check Your Pet Upon Returning Indoors

Fleas thrive on warm-blooded animals like cats, dogs, and rodents. If you’ve been outside with your pet, you’ll want to check their fur, underarms, and ear flaps for fleas.

Wash Your Pet’s Bedding

Fleas can also be found in carpet, plants, furniture, or your pet’s bedding as they wait to approach their next host. Wash your pet’s bedding at least once a week to help combat fleas.

Mow Your Yard Regularly

Mow your lawn regularly and prune low-hanging branches and shrubs to help eliminate hiding spots for fleas.

Maintain Cleanliness

Keep your home clean. Vacuum your carpet, rugs, and upholstery at least once a week to remove fleas and eggs to help prevent them from breeding.

Have a Flea Infestation?

Although fleas commonly enter homes after latching onto family pets, homeowners without pets can still experience flea infestations. Sometimes fleas enter homes from wildlife, roaming cats, or rodents. While some flea infestations exist from previous homeowners.

If you believe you have a flea infestation or want professional help preventing fleas, give United Pest Solutions a call. We proudly serve the Seattle WA metro area with fast and reliable pest control solutions.

 

Fleas – A Pesky Summer Pest!

Family on hike with dog. United Pest Solutions serving Seattle WA & Everett WA talks about Fleas - A Pesky Summer Pest.

Family on hike with dog. United Pest Solutions serving Seattle WA & Everett WA talks about Fleas - A Pesky Summer Pest.For many families, August is a great time of year to get out and enjoy some playtime with your pup. There are many places to go in the Pacific Northwest, water parks, dog parks, paths along the waterfront, and more. But this time of year is also one of the hottest and most humid–the perfect conditions for fleas!

The Dangers of Fleas

Fleas are one of the most annoying and most stubborn parasitic insects. In addition to leaving you with itchy welts, they can also spread harmful diseases to both you or your pets. Some of the serious flea-borne diseases include:

  • Parasitic Dermatitis
  • Anemia and iron deficiencies
  • Rickettsia
  • Ehrlichiosis
  • Tapeworms
  • Meningoencephalitis
  • Plague
  • Bartonella
  • Lyme Disease

Some of these diseases can be deadly if not caught early enough so if you’re experiencing chest pain, fever, chills, delirium, or other unusual symptoms, you should contact your health care provider.

How Fleas Get In Homes

Fleas don’t travel on their own. They don’t have wings. But they can jump. In fact, fleas can jump between 10 to 13 inches just to get to their host. Whatsmore, after a flea has landed on its host, it will lay eggs–which often fall off, causing the infestation to spread around the surrounding area. So if you have indoor pets and are wondering how you got fleas, just remember it only takes a quick trip outdoors to cause a flea infestation.

Flea Prevention

It only takes a few fleas to get inside of your home to cause a full-blown infestation. In fact, a female flea can lay up to 40 eggs a day. Furthermore, it only takes a few weeks for fleas to grow into an adult in search of their next meal. So make sure you aren’t providing a safe place for fleas.

  • Wash or change your pet’s bedding regularly
  • Vacuum often
  • Keep your grass well-trimmed
  • Avoid areas with tall grass/weeds

Signs of Fleas

Wondering if you or your pet has fleas? Here are some common warning signs.

In pets:

  • Bumps or scabs on your pet
  • Excessive scratching or licking to a specific area

In people:

  • Red and itchy welts on your feet and legs
  • Irritated skin

If your pet has fleas, you don’t have to opt for expensive shampoos. Quite often dish soap is enough to get rid of fleas. But to prevent a possible re-infestation, you’ll want to have an exterminator come out and provide you with treatment options.

Experts in Flea Control

You or your family pet can quickly be exposed to fleas. Even the most unsuspecting places can harbor fleas, like your neighborhood or local groomer. Even though these pests are small, they can cause a lot of stress. So if you’re looking to keep your home flea-free, contact your local exterminator, like us at United Pest Solutions!