There have been some unprecedented weather events in 2023, including a historic tropical storm off the coast of California and record-breaking temperatures across the country. As summer winds down and hurricane season ramps up, weather conditions can increase pest populations into the fall.
To keep your home and family protected from pests and the threats they pose, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is sharing information with consumers about which pests to watch out for, how to avoid encounters with them and explain the important role professional pest management plays in public health.
“Pests such as mosquitoes, rodents, flies and even red imported fire ants, depending on where you live, could pop up in your backyard if you are in a region impacted by heavy rain,” said Dr. Jim Fredericks, BCE, board-certified entomologist and senior vice president of public affairs at NPMA. “Red imported fire ants are known for their very painful sting while the rest of these pests can spread disease-causing pathogens to humans.”
Extreme weather can be unpredictable, but there are precautions homeowners can take ahead of time to avoid any infestations. To keep these pests away, Dr. Fredericks recommends homeowners do the following:
- Exterior and interior evaluations of the structure of your home to see if anything can be worsened by the impending storm or provide pests access to your home. Cracks should be sealed with a silicone-based caulk and any existing water damage should be fixed.
- Flooding and heavy rains are likely to attract mosquitoes to your property. Remove items that will hold standing water, which can provide egg laying sites and larval development sites for this pest, by emptying birdbaths, clogged gutters, flowerpots, grill covers, garbage cans and lids.
- The loss of power is not only annoying but can spoil your food and invite rodents and flies into your home. Deposit spoiled food in a sealed trash can away from your home to deter these pests.
“If the storm has come and gone, and you find yourself with an infestation, it’s best to contact a pest control professional for assistance,” the NPMA advises in its news release.