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"Melrose Place" Synopsis and Other Essential Information

As the temperature drops, all types of pests begin to seek shelter from the cold – from rodents to wildlife to insects. Too often, taking shelter means trying to come into your home!

To exclude outdoor-residing pests and prevent them from taking harborage in your home, you should take steps before it gets so cold you don’t want to be working outside – or having to work through the first snowfall!


8 Steps to Prevent Pests

Following are 8 things to do now to help prevent pests in your home this winter, and why they are important:

  1. Clear away piles, rake up fallen leaves, and do a final mowing of the lawn.
    High grasses and weeds, piled leaves, mulch, and trash or other articles left in the yard can provide warmth and shelter for insects and even some wildlife.
  2. Inspect for gaps and holes around the structure of your home. Caulk small cracks, and use a rodent-resistant sealant for any gaps or holes that are 1/4 inch or larger.
    Why? Mice can squeeze through holes as small as 1/4 inch and rats through holes of 1/2 inch. Both rats and mice can chew through many caulks and foam sealants, so sealants should be used that are listed as rodent-resistant or copper or aluminum mesh or screening should be used to keep rodents out.
  3. Look over the screens in all windows and doors for holes or tears. Repair these or replace the screen where needed.
    Why?Flying insects can get into your home through tiny gaps and holes; if the tears or holes are low, crawling insects can also make their way through.
  4. Ensure that firewood for your home’s fireplace or external fire pit is stored well away from the home.
    Why?Placing a woodpile against the exterior walls provides shelter for rodents and insects and can lead to entry points.

  1. Always check the firewood before bringing it into the home, and bring in only as much as will be used immediately.
    Why? This will help to prevent insects that are harboring within the wood from coming out and infesting your home instead.
  2. If you like to feed that birds in winter, use squirrel-resistant feeders and regularly clean up seeds that are dropped.
    Why? Birds are not the only ones attracted to this food, and if it is allowed to spill over and pile up, all sorts of ground animals, including squirrels, will make your bird feeder area their first stop for food.
  3. Keep your garage door closed as much as possible.
    Why? Although your garage may not be as warm as your home, it is still a great deal warmer and provides more shelter for pests than staying outside. An open door is an open invitation to enter and take up residence. And if your garage is attached to your home, it is just one more step for them to get inside.
  4. Trim back shrubs and branches that touch or overhang your house.
    Why?Rodents, squirrels, ants and other insects can use these as walkways to get to the home and find entry points.

Keeping insects, mice, and rats out of your home in the winter is primarily a matter of eliminating exterior attractants and structural points of entry. Following these tips will go a long way toward reducing entry of outside-living pests.


Controlling Other Insects

However, it is also important to keep in mind that pests such as cockroaches, bed bugs, lice, and fleas are generally brought into the home through other means. For more information on these, see:

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