The morning air is becoming crisp in Tasmania as Summer is behind us and Winter is on the horizon. Does the colder weather mean our pest issues are behind us? unfortunately not! many pests breed throughout Autumn and Winter, but also seek shelter in our warm homes.
So what pests might we see and how can we prepare?
Millipedes have a bad reputation for invading homes and gardens across southern Australia in plague like proportions. The cylinder shaped pest can get into food, bedding and clothes, stain surfaces when squashed, smell and damage backyard veggie gardens. They are attracted to light at night
and this is probably why they are drawn to houses. You can however reduce your chance of an infestation by:
- Turn off your exterior lights at night time. Closing your curtains and blinds will reduce light escaping outside.
- Clean up. Millipedes seek shelter of decaying leaves, bark chips and other garden litter and debris.
- Chemical barriers. By far the most effective prevention of millipedes is creating a chemical barrier in areas where they're most likely to enter buildings.
Unfortunately colder weather doesn't mean the chance of an ant infestation is gone completely. Ants will enter your home in search of food and warmth, like other pest species.
The simplest way to deter activity is to limit leaving spills and leftover food sitting around for too long, and make sure food is kept in sealed containers or in the fridge. They can form their colonies inside your home in between bricks and in woodpiles. You can seal up any cracks and gaps in your walls to prevent an ant infestation beginning. If ants have made their way into your walls or ceiling cavity, they can be difficult to eradicate without professional pest control services.
When the weather starts to cool in Tasmania, rats and mice like to move inside your home for warmth and shelter. Telltale signs of a rodent infestation in your home include gnawed and chewed-up surfaces, small pellet like droppings and hearing pitter-pattering inside your walls and ceiling (especially at night)
Rodents can also potentially start fires if they chew through wires and leave them exposed. There is however some simple preventative tips to deter rodents from entering your home:
- Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the home using caulk, steel wool or a combination of both.
- Store food in airtight containers or in the fridge and dispose of garbage regularly.
- Trim trees and shrubs close the the exterior of your home.
If you suspect an existing pest infestation in your home or business, the most effective method of control is to contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the pest problem.