Just Say "Bah Humbug" to Pests This Holiday Season

Dec 5, 2016, 16:18 PM by Fred Speer

Pests are opportunists, plain and simple. They will take advantage of any opportunity to access your home in search of food, water, and warmer harborage. The holiday season is not exempt.

And while pests – including spiders, ants, and mice – won’t come down the chimney with care (well, a raccoon might), they will make their way indoors via Christmas trees, wreaths, firewood, and storage containers for your decorations.

Pests can hide deep in the branches of trees and in crevices of wood. In some cases, insects may even lay eggs in trees or garland, and when brought indoors, the eggs can hatch – creating an unwanted pest infestation in the home.

The Clark Man recommends that you carefully inspect holiday decorations and firewood before bringing them indoors. Look for insects, nests, or eggs, and give your tree or other green decorations a good shake outdoors to dislodge any hidden pest “elves” that may be hiding inside.

Pests can also gain access to your home in boxes of decorations that typically are stored in basements, attics, garages and crawlspaces – all favorite hiding spots for pests. Mice and other pests will find their way into the boxes of during the off-season in search of harborage, and you might find live or dead pests and their droppings inside when you open them up. And, in some cases, you will find that your favorite Santa centerpiece has been used as a mouse house and has been chewed or destroyed by pests.

To avoid an unpleasant encounter with pests, the Clark Man recommends that you unpack your holiday decorations outside and inspect all items for signs of pests, droppings, gnaw marks, or other damage before bringing them indoors. Make sure to carefully inspect strings of lights to ensure that the wiring has not been chewed on by hungry mice – a leading cause of electrical fires in homes.

The best way to prevent pests from making an unwanted guest appearance during the holidays next year is to store your decorations at the end of this holiday season in hard, plastic bins with tightly sealed lids, instead of in cardboard boxes or bags that can easily be chewed through.

Also, do not pile discarded live trees or cut firewood near your home, as this can attract mice, termites, and other pests. The Clark Man also recommends storing firewood off the ground and at least 20 feet from your house on concrete blocks or poles.

If you think you have a problem with pests this holiday season, call or text Clark Pest Control at (800) WE-NEED-YOU (936-3339) or drop me an email at clarkcares@clarkpest.com. We will come out, make a proper pest identification, and then suggest a treatment recommendation.

Until next time I’m the Clark Man, and thanks for helping me keep unwanted pests out of your home.