Have you ever wondered where all the bugs and pests go during the winter months? The answer really depends upon the pest that you are thinking about; some overwinter in the bark of trees, others seek shelter in places like your garage, basement, or attic, and still others migrate for the long, cold winter months. Here is a quick run down of where these pests have disappeared to during the harsh New England winters.
- Flying Insects – Insects that rely on crops and flowering plantings for basic survival must figure out a way to get through the winter. These insects, such as beetles, moths, and dragonflies, migrate as the need arises, similar to the way that birds migrate south for the winter. For some insects, the timing means that the adults that migrate south are not the ones that return in the spring but rather the offspring who emerged during the reproductive season down south fly back to your area.
- Mosquitoes – Bug hibernation is called diapause and this is what many pests, like the mosquito, do to survive the winter months. During diapause a mosquito’s metabolic rate drops to one-tenth of its usual activity, allowing the bug to enter a state of inactivity. Prior to this, insects like mosquitoes seek out shelter where they can remain in this inactive state all winter such as: under your house shingles, inside your chimney, in storm drains, and in naturally occurring places like tree stumps.
- Ticks – Ticks also slow down and end up in a state of inactivity, and they do something special that several types of pests do during winter – they produce glycerol to stop their bodies from freezing. The glycerol serves as a form of antifreeze!
- Ants – Depending upon the type of ants in your area, and the freeze and thaw dates, ants tend to seek out areas such as the behind the bark of trees to get through the winter. Areas such as this absorb the sunlight and allow just enough heat to help ants survive the winters.
- Mice, Rats, and other Wildlife – Here comes the bad news. Some pests find a really great winter hideout – your home. These rodents and other wildlife seek out shelter in your attics, garages, basements, and crawl spaces.
If you have found that there are pests spending the winter in your home call Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733 to “protect” your gardens.