Overwintering Pests

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Professional Overwintering Pest Denver Colorado

An overwintering pest is a species that hibernates “overwinters” throughout the winter season and sometimes part of the spring season. There is no doubt, hibernating animals (bears, bats, prairie dogs, hedgehogs, and turtles) are more notable than the overwintering pest. Both animals and insects enter a dormant state that permits them to survive on minimal nutrients from fats stored inside their bodies.

Commonly Reported Overwintering Pest Sightings In Denver

Denver has some very harsh winters, snow piling up a few feet deep at times. The overwintering state allows Denver insect species to protect themselves from extinction. This is exactly what would happen if the state’s overwintering pests were not continuously reproducing.

What are the most common overwintering pest sightings in Colorado?

Overwintering Pest – Box Elder Bug “Boxelder” Bug

The box elder bug is a memorable insect with its black wings outlined in reddish/orange. The adult grows up to ½ of an inch long, allowing it to infiltrate homes through tiny crevices in damaged concrete block foundations, soffit, entrance door thresholds, garage door seals, and air conditioning duct.

The insect wakes up from overwintering in the spring, maybe not immediately, but as soon as the temperatures begin to climb above 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Overwintering Pest – Ladybug “Lady Asian Beetle”

The ladybug is a small overwintering pest that is highly known for its tiny orange, yellow, or red polka-dotted shell. Like the tortoise, the ladybug totes around a thin shell everywhere she goes. The shell is in relation to the insect’s wings. The added layer of protection helps minimize injury during flight, landing, escape, and capture mishaps.

The ladybug’s most notable characteristic is its foul odor, which is linked to a pyridine-based secretion. The insect emits a foul odor when injured and stressed.

Overwintering Pest – Cluster Fly

The cluster fly and common housefly are nearly two and the same. The insects transmit disease through bites and body contaminants. The earthworm parasite larvae mature, becoming an independent overwintering pest.

Cluster flies colonize in their natural habitat to protect the species from extinction. The insects are not favorable to the winter season. At least, they do not want to spend winter outdoors. Overwintering cluster flies are vulnerable to the elements of winter.  Blowing snow, sleet, single-digit temperatures, and bitter winds, which is where overwintering comes into play.

Overwintering Pest – Leaf-Footed Pine Seed Bug

The leaf-footed pine seed bug is one of the largest overwintering pest species. The insect measures about ¾ of an inch in length, with a dark brown body, three sets of legs, and two long antennas. The diet consists of sap from seeds and cones of the pine tree.

In the natural habitat, the leaf-footed pine seed bug overwintering in shrubs, pine trees, and small cracks in the side of buildings. Just about anywhere away from the winter elements is where the insect can be found throughout the winter season.

The insect is not known to bite but has a tendency to leave messes in its path.

Overwintering Pest – Brown Marmorated Stink Bug “Stinkbug”

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug “BMSB” is another large overwintering pest. While not as large as the leaf-footed pine seed bug, the stinkbug is one of the largest species that belongs to the overwintering pest classification. The adult grows up to ½ of an inch in length.

The insect’s most notable feature, besides the pyridine-based secretion that generates a terrible odor, is the shield-shaped rear plate. The marmorated pattern blankets the thin shell-like covering over the wings.

The stinkbug has three sets of legs that are elbowed to ensure easy maneuverability. Part of the legs and antennas are marmorated as well.

In the natural habitat, the stinkbug takes shelter in trees, shrubs, and gaps in the side of buildings.

How Do I Know If My Home Is Infested With Overwintering Pests?

The first sign of an overwintering pest infiltration is a live insect detected inside your home. When there is more than one overwintering pest detected, there very well could be an infestation. However, there is no genuine way to make this determination without a visual inspection of your home.

Small exterior-to-interior crevices and gaps are utilized to infiltrate commercial and residential facilities. Large openings around utility lines are also suspect for overwintering pest infiltration. These insects are looking for some type of shelter that will protect them from winter element exposure.

How Do I Protect My Denver Property From An Overwintering Pest Infiltration?

The first thing you can do that is guaranteed to offer some protection is to upgrade your home’s pest barrier. A pest barrier is the structural component of a building designed to keep living intruders, including the overwintering pest, out. A waterproof silicone or caulk and metal sheeting cut-to-fit will work perfectly for this project. It will not be easy, but possible if you set your mind to it. Your main goal is to remove all overwintering pest access points into your home. If you can do this, you will be well on your way to creating a strong pest barrier that will not let you down for years to come.

The second thing you can do is to educate your family about the importance of overwintering pest prevention. It is crucial to know the identifying traits of each overwintering pest species. It is also just as or more important to know your extermination options. There are basically two overwintering pest control options – professional and DIY.

Repair Screens Coverings

Most residential window systems utilize screen coverings. In the early spring and late fall, many homeowners like to open their windows and doors to improve circulation. This is a great way to air out your home and unknowingly invite overwintering pests into your home. To ensure this does not happen, carefully assess all screen coverings. Damaged and missing screens should be replaced accordingly.

Crawlspace And Basement Foundation Cracks

One of the most important structural components of a building is the foundation. Below-ground foundations are generally not a problem when it comes to overwintering pests. Above-ground basements and crawlspaces pose some risks when in poor condition. There are several factors associated with cracked building foundations. These factors include poor drainage, settling, and unstable soil.

Depending on the severity of the damage, it may be possible to get it by utilizing a waterproof sealant. Major foundation problems will need to be addressed by a professional.

Exterior Sealants

A waterproof caulk can be utilized for just about every outdoor project imaginable. Utilizing a waterproof sealant to fill in cracks, gaps, holes, and crevices will help keep overwintering pests out of your home.

Be cautious when shopping because not all waterproof sealants are created equal. Some brands are specific for exterior projects while others are specifically designed for interior home improvement projects. Keeping this in mind, quality and strength are also important. The goal is to choose a brand that will offer the highest level of durability and longevity.

Missing Mortar Between Masonry Structures (Brick Siding)

Masonry structures, such as residential brick siding sustain damage due to long-term element exposure. Missing and cracked mortar joints are suspect for overwintering pest infiltration. It is not always possible for these insects to infiltrate your home through damaged masonry mortar joints. However, these damaged crevices make the perfect hiding place for overwintering pest species during the winter season, which could result in a home infiltration later on down the road.

Window And Door Frames

Windows and doors are framed to ensure durability, aesthetics, and longevity. Unfortunately, these frame structures sustain damage every hour on hour, especially the exterior components. Long-term element exposure will cause significant damage to exterior window frames and door frames. The interior portion of the frame will also sustain damage due to normal wear and tear.

Utilize the proper sealant to fill gaps and cracks to keep overwintering pests in their natural habitat.

Wood Clapboard And Fascia

Gaps between the fascia and clapboard make the perfect access point for overwintering pests. Winged and wingless overwintering pest species can utilize these openings as winter hiding spots and infiltrate your attic.

We recommend foam insulation for this home improvement project. A small bead running along the bottom of the clapboard and fascia will do the trick. Avoid applying large beads because foam insulation expands to create a perfect seal.

Attic, Basement, And Crawlspace Vents

Most states require housing developers to install vents in basements, crawlspaces, and attics. Vents are utilized to improve airflow to combat heat and humidity. Unfortunately, most construction workers do not take the extra time to seal around vents, leaving them exposed to overwintering pests and other small insect species.

Go around the edges of each vent to create a seal. It is also recommended to cover vent openings with some type of screen material.

Utility (Water, Electricity, And Sewage) Clearances

Utility pipes and wires are utilized to bring water and electricity into a building. These openings are also utilized to allow sewage to flow freely from the sink, bathtub, and shower drains and commodes. There is nothing that can be done about the utility pipes and wires, but it is possible to seal the opening. Utilize wood or metal sheeting for this project.

Sealing Overwintering Pest Entry Points

The only sure way to keep overwintering pests out of your home is to seal all potential entry points, as previously mentioned above. The new seals will not only fight against overwintering pests but also rodents, pantry pests, birds, snakes, and other insect species.

Our office is conveniently located in the heart of Denver. We employ the best exterminators and technicians in the industry. Our exterminators are licensed by the State of Colorado.

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