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The 5 Most Common Fall Pests

3-5 Minutes to Read

Pest control

When the hot Oklahoma summer finally comes to an end, many people mistakenly believe that the bulk of their pest problems are gone until warm weather returns. Unfortunately, the start of fall signals many new pest problems and, many pests continue to thrive and start seeking shelter and food sources indoors. As you might imagine, this often makes the autumn season incredibly busy for pest control professionals as homeowners and business owners start to combat the growing pest populations that are finding new ways to gain access to structures.

For most people, the arrival of pests in the fall comes in the form of a cockroach or line of ants crawling around on their kitchen counter. While this may not seem like a huge shock to some, it could signal a much larger population of pests is hiding nearby or that an infestation may be looming without the appropriate intervention from a licensed and experienced pest control provider. In some cases, pests that make their way indoors may nest inside of your walls without your knowledge until the weather warms again and they start to emerge en masse. These dangers are what make fall pest control a necessity and not a luxury.

Common Fall Pests in Oklahoma

Knowing what pests are likely to invade your home during the fall and how to identify them can make it much easier to deal with them.

According to the National Pest Management Association, rodents and other pests invade nearly 21 million homes during the fall and winter months in search of food sources and stable temperatures. Below you will find information about the most common pests seen in Oklahoma during the fall to help ensure you are prepared to deal with them appropriately.

European stink bug, Rhaphigaster nebulosa, in front of white background

Stink Bugs

Brown marmorated stink bugs are a common reason for residents in Oklahoma to invest in fall pest control. While they are not known to carry any diseases or bite, they are capable of damaging clothing or furniture with their droppings and creating an intense, stinky odor when frightened or crushed. Often, these pests are introduced indoors by hitchhiking on clothing or personal belongings, but they can also be introduced to a garage that gives them access indoors by attaching themselves to a parked car. For this reason, it is important to always check your belongings in the fall to ensure you are not providing a free ride to these persistent pests.

Since stink bugs prefer to nest inside of dark, tight areas, they can often be found in holes or cracks inside of the home, including baseboards or inside wall voids they have access to. Unfortunately, once these pests become established, homeowners can only wait until they emerge in the spring without potentially damaging the interior of their home to locate and eliminate nests. Fortunately, with a great preventative pest control plan in place, many of these problems can be avoided and stink bugs can be controlled before they make it indoors.

rat isolated on white background

Rodents

Mice and rats are among the most common fall pests in Oklahoma because they search for the same warmth and food to survive the winter that humans do. Unfortunately, a functional furnace and well-stocked pantry often make homes and businesses a vacation home that rodents will not want to leave once they have established a nest. A problem further compounded by their ability to quickly reproduce and turn a small group of mice or rats into a much larger problem.

Rodents are notorious for spreading a variety of diseases including hantavirus or salmonellosis while also introducing bacteria, fleas and lice to their new environments. If a single rodent is found inside of a home or business this is often enough to warrant reactionary fall pest control. Often, the sooner a rodent population is eliminated the better to ensure that large numbers are not actively creating nests and damaging the structure or introducing health hazards to those that encounter their waste.

two ants playing

Ants

Though typically a large problem during the spring and summer months, many ant species that nest inside of homes or businesses will continue their normal routines unchecked without fall pest control. As you might imagine, some of the most notorious species that are common during the autumn months include odorous house ants and carpenter ants. Respectively, these species of ants can contaminate your food stores or cause extensive damage to the wooden components or structure of a home or business in just a short amount of time.

Many ant species are drawn to cut or dead wood. Unfortunately, this means that your firewood reserves are often a suitable nesting site for both ants and a variety of other unwanted pests. To keep your home protected from the wide variety of ants that call the state of Oklahoma home, check all firewood before bringing it indoors and store it a minimum of 5 feet from your home’s foundation to limit the chances of explorers from finding a vulnerability that leads indoors.

Cockroach

Cockroaches

Although considered a year-round pest, cockroaches are among the most dangerous and common fall pests in Oklahoma. As a health hazard, cockroaches can spread up to 33 different kinds of bacteria around a home and can often cause asthma attacks in children. In many cases, these problems are compounded as they unknowingly contaminate food preparation surfaces and stored foods that may be accessible to them. Like other pests, cockroaches that are living in garden beds, garages or other outbuildings may move indoors as temperatures start to drop to find more suitable nesting options.

Since cockroaches are nocturnal and try to avoid human contact as much as possible, it can often be difficult for homeowners or business owners to know they have a cockroach problem until the nest becomes so large that cockroaches begin venturing out in search of new food and water sources. Often, this means that if you see a single cockroach in your cabinets or walking across your countertops, there are likely more hiding nearby. This thought alone should make fall pest control a priority if these unwelcome and dangerous pests are found.

House Spider

Spiders

Although commonly used as a decoration during Halloween, many Oklahomans find that spider populations around their home or business can grow exponentially during the fall months. Often this is caused by their unique mating habits in which the autumn shift encourages them to start searching for a suitable mate. However, the spiders have likely always been there and are just now reaching maturity and growing larger to make their presence known.

While many outdoor spiders can help control insect populations, they can become dangerous and make people feel uncomfortable when they make their way inside. From harmless species to their more sinister counterparts like black widows and brown recluse spiders, the team at Emtec Pest Control has the knowledge and resources needed to eliminate them. If you are finding more spiders inside of your home or business, it may be time to invest in fall pest control to remove their food sources and encourage them to nest elsewhere.

Not sure what pests you have?

Give us a call! One of our certified technicians can help identify any fall pests that may be present and recommend suitable treatment options with a free estimate.

Fall Pest Prevention

To remain safe, here are some TIPS that homeowners should keep in mind throughout the fall and spring seasons:

  • 1

    Seal Entry Points

    Before temperatures start to dip, homeowners and business owners should focus on finding any cracks or crevices that pests may be able to utilize to enter their structure. If found, these entry points should be sealed with caulk or another suitable material to eliminate gaps that small pests can take advantage of. This includes checking your window screens for rips or tears if you want to let fresh air inside as well as any changes that occur due to foundational shifts.

  • 2

    Thoroughly Check Storage Items

    For many people, fall marks the beginning up the upcoming holiday season. If you regularly store Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas decorations and are planning on opening them soon, it is important to check storage boxes for potential pests before you introduce them into your garage or inside of your home. Common hitchhikers that use cardboard boxes and other seasonal storage totes for nests include rodents, cockroaches and spiders.

  • 3

    Improve Your Food Storage

    Proper food storage of pantry items is critical for keeping a pest-free kitchen in the fall months. One of the best ways to achieve a heightened state of food security is to invest in mason jars or air-tight storage containers for grains, rice, or other dry goods. Keeping things in their original plastic wrapping or cardboard boxes may make it easier for rodents and other pests to gain entry to and contaminate them. With the proper food storage resources in place, you can be sure your pantry items are not being used as a buffet for fall pests.

  • 4

    Eliminate Water Leaks

    While water leaks may help ensure that your pipes do not freeze during cold temperatures, it could be creating an oasis for cockroaches, rodents and other pests that need water to survive. As one of the core needs that drives fall pests indoors, water leaks should be minimized and eliminated wherever possible to remain pest-free during autumn. Pay special attention to bathroom and kitchen areas to ensure you are not leaving a dripping pipe unattended for thirsty pests.

  • 5

    Properly Store Firewood

    As previously mentioned, firewood can often be utilized as a nesting site and breeding ground for a variety of pests. Once this firewood is brought indoors and stored near the home, it could be creating a situation that allows pest populations to thrive. To be safe, all firewood should be stored at least 5 feet away from a home’s foundation and should be checked before being brought indoors to avoid transplanting hitchhikers that may be looking for a warmer environment.

When to Call a Professional

Emtec staff taking calls in the office

Fall pests often invade homes quickly during a short window of time. Whether you want to invest in preventative pest control methods, or you already have fall pests showing up inside of your home, now is the perfect time to call Emtec Pest Control.

At Emtec Pest Control, we are committed to safe and responsible pest control. We understand that your family’s safety is your number one priority, so we make it our priority, too. If you have any other questions about any of these pests or pest control for your home or business, contact your Oklahoma pest control experts at Emtec Pest Control by calling us or by filling out our online contact form. Our service areas in Northeast Oklahoma include Bixby, Broken Arrow, Catoosa, Owasso, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Skiatook, Stillwater, Tulsa and the surrounding areas. In Central Oklahoma, we service Edmond, Moore, Oklahoma City, Yukon and the surrounding areas. You can also connect with us on social media for more helpful pest control tips and information. We are on Facebook.