Although you may not be able to celebrate the upcoming holidays how you usually would this year, you can still have a great time in the comfort of your home. As exciting as these events can be, they can be inviting for pests, as well.
Reasons Pests Invade Your Home on the Holidays
Keep your house from suffering a major pest infestation by knowing what draws in these unwanted houseguests. Here are what attracts pests to your home during the holidays:
- Christmas Trees
The Christmas tree is often the mainstay of the season’s decorations. However, using live trees is also one of the common ways for pests to enter your space.
Insects such as ants, spiders, and ticks can hide deep inside the tree branches and in crevices of the wood, making a home in it before it was ever cut down. They may have even laid eggs. Once the tree is set up indoors, you would be carrying them in as well.
- Edible Decorations
Making use of edible decorations is one of the fun parts of celebrating holidays. You get to think outside the box as you figure out how to beautify your home using food. This can include constructing gingerbread houses, utilizing candy canes, hanging popcorn garlands, and placing cookies and milk on a plate for Santa Claus.
Although you expect to see some cookies missing the next day, you might witness pests gathering instead. These displays can attract the wrong kind of company.
- Fabric Decorations
You can also rely on fabric decorations to spruce up your home. For example, you may prefer to use a linen tablecloth or hang your handmade stockings for Christmas. Since these events only happen annually, it’s likely for you to store them somewhere for most of the year.
Fabric pests, like moths, are attracted to these types of materials. They can do significant damage to them as well. Before you can use them to decorate your home, you might have to deal with these insects first.
- Cardboard Boxes
Once the celebrations are over, it can be hard to find adequate space for holiday decorations. You’re likely to store them inside cardboard boxes and leave them in the attic, basement, or garage until it’s almost time for the festivities again.
Since those boxes are often left undisturbed for months, they can provide food, warmth, and shelter to many pests.
- Holiday Dishes
Of course, all these special occasions involve food. Various holidays come with its signature dishes, and each one is sure to delight every guest. However, cooking leaves a mess, and with all the work that goes into preparing and serving, you might find that you had not cleaned up your kitchen as well as you thought.
As they say, food brings people together — but if you’re not careful enough, you can say the same about pests that feast on the fallen scraps of food or spilled drinks.
Pumpkins are versatile staples when it comes to fall. Whether they’re for Thanksgiving or Halloween, you can use them for just about everything. You can use these gourds as an ingredient for dishes, carve and shape them for a jack-o’-lantern, or include them in your scarecrow display. They’re a great addition to your home for the holidays.
Still, useful as they may be, they can attract undesirable pests. Your placing them in front of your porch may become an invitation for insects and wildlife to come closer to your home.
- Miscellaneous Decorations
When it comes to decorations, the sky and your creativity are the limits. There are multiple ways for you to decorate your space and get in the spirit.
During Christmas, for instance, you have loads of options. You can hang mistletoe, put wreaths on your doors, decorate with pine cones and garlands, and bring in firewood. Using all these natural items can make your home look more beautiful and ready for the occasion, but note that each can house pesky insects like ants and termites.
How to Keep Your Home Pest-Free
You don’t have to stop decorating or serving food of course, but don’t let these pests win either. Here are some ideas for what you can do to ensure you don’t have uninvited guests:
- Seal All Possible Entry Points
Take care of every single area in your home where insects might enter. Prevention is better than cure, so following preventive pest control measures is an effective solution for keeping them out. Look for gaps, nooks, and crannies in your house because these can become their main entrance and exit points. Seal them up with caulking and sealant.
- Inspect Your Christmas Tree and Other Decorations
Before you bring out the Christmas tree and other decorations, inspect them first. Shake the tree and the decor vigorously before bringing them inside. This removes bugs that might be clinging to the wood, as well as their eggs. Always examine the top of the tree trunk for any insects like spiders or roaches. Check the tree for any spiderwebs.
- Avoid Leaving Pumpkins out for Too Long
Pumpkins can become both a food source and a breeding ground for pests, so avoid leaving them out for too long. When you no longer need them, dispose of them at once. Also, when you’re carving, clean out all of the pulp. This lessens the amount of mould growth and attracts fewer bugs.
- Check the Boxes Outside
The boxes that store your holiday decorations might shelter pests. Before you contact your local pest control, another way to keep the bugs out is by checking your stuff outside. Look for signs of insects, droppings, and any other damage. Many insects feed on cardboard, so store your decor inside plastic or metal bins with tightly sealed lids instead of cardboard boxes.
- Store Your Food Properly
It’s common to display your food on a table for people to graze when they want. But leaving the dishes out in the open for a long time can also attract pests. Store food by placing them inside mason jars or airtight glass containers. Having a rubber seal on the lid will make these more impenetrable by insects.
- Clean as You Go
With all the holiday activities taking up your time and attention, you might neglect to tidy up after yourself. Before you Google “pest control near me”, know that there is another way to keep the pests at bay. A thorough cleaning can ensure that no insects can enter your home. After cooking, wash all the dirty and used dishes immediately. Check for food crumbs that might be on the floor too.
Things can get hectic during the holidays, and you might not notice that some of the things you do can encourage pests to make their way into your home. These tips, along with the help of pest control companies, can deter invasive pests. Take note of what you can do to prevent them from ruining your celebration.
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