Pests that invade your home in winter

Unfortunately, pests don’t go away during the colder weather. Just like us, they want to stay warm, so here are the most common signs that your home has become a winter refuge for unwanted guests.

June 16, 2022

Mice and rats

Winter is peak season for rodents. They are warm blooded and spend winter sniffing out warm and cosy spots to live (like your home). They can chew through wood, tunnel through insulation and even create a cosy nest for their family in your sofa (yikes!). They can also chew the coatings from electrical wires causing major damage in the process.

You many notice:

  • Droppings – dark brown/black like small pellets. Mouse droppings are obviously smaller than rat droppings.  
  • Chewed packets in your pantry, that contain food such as grains, rice, corn and seeds – although they’ll eat pretty much anything.
  • Your pets bark or scratch at the walls.

Cockroaches

Cockroaches tend to slow down in the winter, but they still love a warm place to call home. Here are some signs they’ve moved in

  • You see one or two (we can guarantee there will be more lurking somewhere)
  • Tiny peppercorn-like droppings on your floor
  • If you have an infestation, it smells musty, oily, earthy or dank 
  • You find egg casings

Termites

Termites don’t hibernate or take time off during winter! During the cooler weather they are attracted to high levels of moisture and warmth, such as leaky showers or pipes. Look out for:  

  • Termite droppings – they are very small, usually only about one millimetre long and look like dust or small wood shavings.
  • Cracked paint or plaster on walls.  
  • Noticeable floor or ceiling damage.
  • Mud tunnels in or around your home.  

Ants

Ants are active all year round, but colder weather conditions can drive them indoors.  

Wherever there is one ant, there are hundreds more, so if you have spotted one or two, the entire family might have moved in.

To avoid winter pests:

  • Keep your home clean
  • Sweep or vacuum floors regularly (especially where you prepare or eat food)
  • Wipe up spills immediately
  • Keep bench tops clean
  • Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink or dishwasher
  • Don’t leave piles of clothes on the floor – it’s the perfect place for pests to call home!
  • Have a look for any cracks or gaps in your home that could be an entry point for pets.  
  • Keep pet food bowls clean.
  • If you suspect that pests have already moved in, call your local pest expert so they don’t get too comfortable!

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