December 12, 2022
Are you looking forward to the holidays? There’s so much to do – from decorating your home to making gingerbread houses with the kids, from baking sweet treats to share with coworkers, neighbors, and anyone you come across to hosting festive parties where the yuletide spirit is rocking. In all the hustle and bustle of the season, don’t forget about pests. Unlike the case of Snoopy and the Red Baron, there will be no pause in the conflict between you and the insects and rodents trying to take over your home. To prevent pests from taking over your home season this (and all year long), Pine State Pest Solutions has a few tricks up our sleeves that we’d like to share with you.
Keep the bugs out of your baking supplies
It seems like every household has its go-to holiday dessert recipes; it’s almost inevitable, right? If you haven’t headed out to the grocery store just yet to collect the ingredients you need to bake yours, please take a moment to read these shopping tips:
Before you even put an item in your grocery cart, take a few seconds to inspect it for any signs of damage to the packaging. If the box or bag has a hole in it, put it down and look for one that is free of dents, holes, and other deficiencies. Likewise, if you notice flies or other bugs hanging around food, keep on walking by.
Once you get home, give your purchased goods one last check for any signs of pests before putting them away.
Store food in containers that pests can’t get into
It’s unfortunate but flour, sugar, and other common staples found in most pantries or lining kitchen shelves easily transform into insect breeding grounds if homeowners aren’t careful. To prevent moths and other stored product pests from infesting your supplies, store foodstuffs in airtight glass containers with lids.
Keep a tidy kitchen and the bugs will have to move on
If you have bugs and rodents in your home, it’s because they’re being fed. It’s not necessarily obvious where they’re getting their sustenance from but we can tell you that grease buildup between the stove and countertop and crumbs under the fridge and scattered across the floor will attract hungry pests. Even your wonderfully displayed gingerbread house could become fodder for opportunistic pests. Keeping a tidy kitchen will help minimize this particular risk. Wash every surface really well after each use, clean up spills right away, and make sure your pantry shelves and floor aren’t serving as a buffet.
Watch out for pests that might be in your real Christmas tree
If you trek out to the nearest tree farm in order to secure a live tree for the holidays, be sure to give it a good once over and a solid shake to dislodge spiders and other bugs that might be hiding out among its branches. The same goes if you cut down greenery for wreaths and whatnot.
Be careful when you bring your holiday décor out of storage
If you’re like most of us, you’ve probably kept your holiday decorations up in the attic, down in the basement, overhead in the garage, or in a storage closet that doesn’t get too much foot traffic- in other words, tucked out of the way for another year. The trouble, or potential problem, with this is that those areas are hotbeds for pest activity because they’re typically dark, have a lot of clutter, and aren’t visited very often.
When you haul your trappings out, make sure you inspect everything for signs of pests including chew marks, shredded material, feces, and live bugs.
Don’t forget about bed bugs this holiday season
Even if you’re not traveling for the holidays, you could find yourself with a bed bug problem if your college-aged kid is heading home from the dorms or if you plan on hosting out-of-town guests. College dorms are famous for having bed bugs so if you’re not careful, you’ll be dealing with dirty laundry and biting pests. While your houseguests probably won’t expect you to clean their dirty garments, they might inadvertently bring bed bugs into your home if they traveled on planes or stayed in a hotel on their drive to you.
To stop hitchhiking bed bugs from gaining ground in your home, encourage everyone to check their belongings in the garage or even in the driveway before bringing them indoors. You might also consider installing mattress and box spring encasements on your guest beds to prevent these bugs from infesting. Finally, wash and dry clothes using the hottest water and heat permissible by the fabric.
What to do if you find pests in your home this month
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to avoid them, pests get in. If you find that’s the case this holiday season, please contact Pine State Pest Solutions for effective pest control in Auburn, South Portland, and throughout our multi-county service area. You can count on our locally owned and operated Maine pest control company to resolve your pest problems, no matter how severe.
*initial start-up fees may apply.
*initial start-up fees may apply.
We’re also Maine’s premier bed bug control specialists
Using a combination of chemicals and heat and following our proven process, our team of professional bed bug exterminators will eradicate bed bug eggs, nymphs, and live bed bugs so you can rest easy. To learn more about our bed bug control services and to find out if your home qualifies for our 30-day bed bug guarantee, please reach out today!