Winter Pests: What to Look Out For and Who to Call

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Winter Pests: What to Look Out For and Who to Call


Familiarize yourself with common Texan pests, take household precautions, and know who to call in the event that uninvited guests do arrive.

As Houstonians, we get fairly used to the heat of the spring and summer, so once the air starts to cool, we spend more time indoors whether that be baking, watching holiday classics, or decorating the tree.

Similarly, Houston’s pests thrive in the heat and prefer to hunker down once the air starts to cool. Most insect species become stagnant, or even dormant, when temperatures drop. During the colder seasons is when they make their way to a nearby house and gather in corners, wall cavities, or any warm openings they can find in your home.

How do you prevent pests in and around your home? What are the steps you can take? Familiarize yourself with common Texan pests, take household precautions, and know who to call in the event that uninvited guests do arrive.

Common Wintertime Pests in Texas

If you don’t properly prep you will likely see these common insects and/or critters in your home:

  • Ants

    Ants commonly hibernate during the cooler months, but that doesn’t mean you’re out of the clear. Their “safe place” to hibernate for the winter could be your home, in your attic insulation or underneath your house.

  • Cockroaches

    Cockroaches can be tricky to tackle because they multiply very quickly. For us Houstonians, cool weather is scarce, so you can’t rely on nature to take care of the infestation. It’s recommended to bait the exterior of your house, make sure all openings of your home are sealed, and take precautions like regularly trimming grass and shrubbery. If you prepare before the air starts to cool down, you could prevent cockroaches from entering your home.

    Always keep in mind that whether you find it dead or alive, cockroaches are still a sign of an infestation. The sight of one roach likely means there are probably more nearby. In fact, roaches can multiply at such a quick rate that one cockroach can give birth to 60 offspring at a time. Pro tip: once you kill a cockroach, always dispose of it. Their corpses attract additional cockroaches.

  • Fleas

    If you own a pet, you are likely aware of how tricky fleas can be to treat. Similar to other insects, fleas seek warmth during the cooler months, and what’s more warm than your dog’s fur? According to Kyle Jackson, a John Moore pest technician, “Since Houston stays generally warm, fleas can be present year round.”

  • Spiders

    A simple way to avoid a spider infestation is by making sure your home is free of all of the pests mentioned above. Spiders rely on other insects for food. If their main food source is taking shelter in your home for the holidays, then so will the spiders.

    If you happen to come across a spider or spider web, don’t fret right away. In fact, pest control professionals recommend keeping some spiders around since they kill the pests that create a nuisance in your home. However, it is important to note that Texas is home to venomous spiders: the Brown Recluse and the Black Widow. If you have a poisonous spider in or around your home, you can call on John Moore’s pest control team to exterminate them.

  • Rodents

    Rodents are never fun, but during the winter months they like to cause even more of a ruckus. The four most common rodents in Texas are house mice, field mice, norway rats, and roof rats. If you think your home could have uninvited furbearers, reach out to a professional immediately.

    The rodent control pros at John Moore follow a safe and efficient 5 step process to ensure mice and rats are removed from your home and that they don’t come back: inspection, exclusion, extermination, decontamination, and repair.

    If you have other kinds of wildlife in your home—racoons, bats, possums, or squirrels—we follow Texas state law and capture and release the animal into the wild, far away from your home. We will also decontaminate and disinfect any areas the animal came in contact with to eliminate their scent trail.

What You Can Do to Prevent Pest Infestations this Winter

When it comes to pest control, it’s always recommended that you leave the treatment up to the professionals. However, there are precautions you and your family can take to help prevent an infestation in the first place:

1. Seal Openings

Make sure all openings or cracks on the exterior of your home are sealed.

2. Avoid Clutter

Try to prevent clutter from stacking up in and around your home. Undisturbed clutter (for example, records or old boxes of photographs) tend to be a good harborage location for pests.

3. Trim Branches

If you live by a lot of trees or shrubbery, make sure all branches are properly trimmed and are not touching your home. Something as simple as a branch touching your home could serve as a bridge for pesky possums, squirrels, and rats to get on your roof. By allowing them access to your roof, they have the ability to gnaw their way through your home’s paneling, giving them free reign to your attic.

4. Clean Regularly

Tend to household chores regularly. Keep all food and snacks in closed, air-tight containers, take the trash out regularly, and avoid a collection of dirty dishes in the sink or on the counter.

Even if you and your family are following these four precautions, it is still possible for you to get a pest infestation from your neighbors, visitors, or by simply doing yardwork. Pests and rodents are resilient—if they need warmth, they will find a way to get to it.

Who to Call to Take Care of Pests

If you notice any chew marks on your wiring, mysterious droppings, or any other signs that indicate you could potentially have a pest infestation in your home, reach out to a local professional immediately. John Moore’s pest technicians have served the Houston area since 1998, so we know a thing or two when it comes to the pests and rodents you can expect to see in your home. Luckily, we also know how to resolve the issue and how to prevent it from happening again.

It is always good practice to do regular inspections of your household. However, a pest technician knows exactly where and what to look for. Along with where to look, our technicians also know how to safely apply treatment. At-home remedies can lead to harsh chemicals contaminating your home’s air, so it’s always safe to check with a professional about whether your pesticide could potentially put you and your family at risk.

By calling John Moore’s pest control technicians today, you can schedule a free inspection with a member of our team. We will work with you to create a customizable plan for your home and help you have a worry-free winter.

Schedule your free inspection with a licensed pest control professional at John Moore today. We will customize a plan that is suitable for your home and guarantee customer satisfaction. For quality pest control, call the John Moore Pest Control Specialists at 713-730-2525 for an estimate or book now online!

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