Pest Prevention For Hurricane Season
It’s hurricane season folks! Here in the Carolinas, we’re no strangers to hurricanes and the damage that comes with them.
Many of us prepare for a potential hurricane by stocking up on food, purchasing flashlights or generators, moving to higher ground and preparing our homes for flooding or harsh winds. However–humans aren’t the only ones affected by storms like hurricanes, and what many people overlook during hurricane season are the pests that come along with them.
Pests prevention during a Hurricane?
That’s right! Hurricane conditions, both before and after, leave plenty of wildlife and insects with nowhere to go. This is where you come in! Hurricane season means wetness and damage, which means super easy pest access into your home.
As if there weren’t a million other things to think about during a hurricane, go ahead and add pest prevention to your list as well.
Let’s talk about what kind of pests you might find trying to get into your home this season, how to prepare your home and finally–what actions to take post-hurricane.
What kind of pests–you might ask?
We’ll start with ants. Ants–who normally live in the ground–are forced out of their homes and onto higher ground when hurricanes come around, flooding their soil. Shockingly, ants can actually link together to stay afloat. This means they band together (for weeks on end) and float on top of the flood water until they find a dryer place to call home. Nine times out of ten, ants end up at your home.
You know how in the summer if you’re out after dark there’s about a million and one mosquitoes flying around? Think of that for hurricane season, but worse. Initially, flood waters from hurricanes lower the mosquito population. But the remaining standing water that sits in places like your gutters becomes the perfect breeding ground for these little guys. Post-hurricane, mosquitoes are likely to lay their eggs in your gutters and in the soft soil from the flood waters. Mosquitos can multiply quickly, so be sure to look into removing them as soon as you spot them.
Aka, cockroaches. These guys just never know when to quit. If you didn’t know by now, cockroaches love moist environments. Any super wet or flooded soil around your house is likely to be crawling with cockroaches post-hurricane. Make sure to seal up any possible holes around your home to keep these guys (and the water) out for good.
Pests like mice and rats seem to be the most confused when it comes to hurricanes. With all the commotion that goes on during a hurricane, before and after, these pests just want to find a warm place to seek refuge. Unfortunately for us, rodents are excellent swimmers. Once they find their way to your house, it takes only the size of a nickel for a rodent the size of a rat to squeeze in.
Prepare Before Hurricane Season
The time is now to start preparing your home for a potential hurricane or storm. Make sure to inspect the outer parameters of your home as well as any vulnerable spots on the inside as well, such as your attic or basement.
Things like doors and windows should be properly sealed to not only keep bugs from coming in but also to protect the inside of your home from the harsh winds and rain that storms often bring. It’s also important to make sure that any loose siding or roofing material is repaired to prevent winds from doing further damage.
Once a storm hits, it becomes a lot harder and sometimes impossible to stop the damage once it starts. Preparing now will ensure peace of mind and will lessen the chances of pests seeking refuge in your home during a storm.
Post-hurricane Solutions to Pests
Sometimes damage after a major storm just can’t be prevented. The moist and often damaged environment that hurricanes leave behind are the perfect breeding ground for pests. Once they find their way into your yard and around the perimeter of your home, it can be very easy for these pests to find a way inside. Follow these tips for a pest-free hurricane season:
On the outside:
- Evaluate the areas around your home that have been damaged
- Seal any cracks or holes near pipes and utility lines
- Clear any standing water in things like bird baths, flower pots, pet bowls and containers
- Unclog gutters of any water or debris
- Remove tree branches and leaf litter that are in close proximity to your home
On the inside:
- Repair damaged screens or windows
- Check ceilings and floors for signs of sagging
- Check for any holes to the outside that might’ve let in water
- Get rid of any old food that might’ve gone bad during the storm
Pest proofing your home (before or after a storm) is no easy task to handle by yourself. At Killingsworth, we specialize in both pest prevention and pest removal. Give us a call to speak with one of our pest control specialists and schedule your free consultation.