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Common Winter Pests

As wintertime approaches, all of the pests that made their home in your backyard or neighborhood all spring, summer, and fall will be looking for someplace warmer to go.  If you aren’t careful, that could be your home! Check out our list to learn about the most common wintertime pests, and why it’s important to deal with them sooner than later!

Birds/Bats

Any homeowner with a chimney can attest to this; if you don’t put a chimney cap on it, you will most certainly have a bat or bird in the house at some point.  Bats and birds, both warm-blooded animals, will try to squeeze into any nook or cranny in your home to stay warm in the winter time.  It could be your chimney or attic, but it could also be inside a mounted exterior light.  Be sure that your roof area is sealed to keep these flying pests out.

Mice/Rats

Probably the most common wintertime pest, mice and rats need a minuscule opening to find their way into your home.  Just as with bats and birds, it is important to prevent these pests from coming into your home by blocking off potential points of entry.  If they have already managed to find their way inside, then your best bet, short of hiring an exterminator, is to make sure all food and water is stored securely.  If they cannot find a consistent food source, they may move on from your home.

Squirrels/Chipmunks

Just like Mice and Rats, Squirrels and Chipmunks will look for a warm, dry place to go in the winter time and that may just be your attic.  While chipmunks tend to build underground nests, if they can find a way into your attic, they will most certainly take a warm, convenient option instead of digging a burrow.  Be sure to cap your chimneys, check your fascia boards and rakes for any structural damage, and clear away any large shrubs or branches from near your home. This will discourage the pests from taking up residence.

Dangers

These pests, in addition to a variety of bugs, like fleas or bedbugs, should be dealt with as soon as they are discovered.  All of these pests can carry diseases and, in the case of rats and mice, are likely to leave a mess in your home from digging through your cabinets and leaving behind droppings.  You should attempt to deal with a pest problem as soon as its discovered, as leaving it for another day could leave you with an infestation. That is why you should contact Absolut Pest Control today for more information about us and our available services.

Winter Pest Preparation

As the weather cools, all of the animals and bugs that lived outside all spring and summer are looking for someplace warm to go.  If you don’t want to deal with an infestation all winter, it is important to take steps to prevent pests from being able to take up residence inside your home during the cold months. There are steps you can take both indoors and outdoors to ensure that this does not happen.

Indoors

  • Don’t leave out any food: Any pests that come into your home are looking for food, and if you don’t provide it, they are more likely to leave and look elsewhere. However, if you leave food accessible to the pests looking for shelter, don’t expect them to take up residence anywhere else.
  • Check around your pipes: Most pests that make their way into your home will do so through small holes around your pipes. To keep pests out, check around your plumbing and baseboard heaters and fill the gaps with something that the pests cannot chew through. Steel wool is a great option.
  • Check the weather stripping around your doors and windows: Just as pests can squeeze through small gaps around your plumbing, if there is a gap under your door, or around your window frame, they will try to squeeze through there to get to the warmth. If any of your weatherstrippings appears to be coming loose, be sure to change it before the winter months begin.

Outdoors

  • Be sure to move wood piles away from your home: Wood and leaf piles are safe havens for pests in the winter. The wood piles hold warmth and moisture which attracts all sorts of pests.  If you leave your wood piles too close to your home, you are more likely to attract pests into it.
  • Gutters: In the same vein as making sure your wood piles are away from your home if your gutters are full of clutter, pests can take up residence in there. Since your gutters are attached to your home, it is a natural progression for the pests to then look for a way into your home.  To ensure that you don’t invite pests to come into your home, make sure they can’t take up residence anywhere near it.

For more information about us and our available services, contact us today!

Fall Pests: Bees

As the summer starts to wind down and the colder weather begins to roll in, you may start to notice that the bees surrounding your home have started to find their way inside. Many worker bees are out in large numbers in desperate search of a place to call home for the winter. Despite this, many will eventually fall victim to the cold and die. But this is not true for every bee. Many individuals, including the queen, will find a place to shelter them for the winter. A common place for this to happen is inside of residential homes, specifically the attic. If homeowners do not take preventive measures a queen be can make herself at home in this upper level of your home. Similar to the inside of a hollow tree, the devoid areas inside of your home’s walls are the perfect site for bees to set up shop. This nesting site does not have to be near the entrance point either as nests are often found a ways away from where the insects enter the wall.

What To Do

Individuals who believe they be in this situation want to handle the issue before it becomes a serious problem. This is because the longer you wait to take care of the problem, the more defensive the bees will become as they get progressively more used to their new home, leading to heightened chances of stinging accidents. The best route to take if you find yourself in this situation is to contact a  professional like those at Absolut Pest Control.

Transporting Bees

Although salvaging some colonies is not realistic, quite often professionals with the experience and know how can safely transport a bee colony from your home to somewhere they will thrive without the chance of disturbing other humans. It is important that you understand any cleanup or repair needs that will follow the removal process as well.

If you find that it is not possible for a professional to safetly remove the bees from the premises then the recommended course of action is to exterminate the colony. This is generally recommended if the hives are too close to everyday activity as it can quickly become a problem for those around the house.

Contact Absolut Pest Control For All of Your Bee Control Needs!

If you are having trouble with bees inside of your home this Fall, be sure to contact the professionals at Absolut Pest Control! We will be sure to take care of any problems you have regarding bees once and for all, reach out today!

Preventing Fall Pests

In addition to colorful leaves and warm apple cider, Fall brings about the beginning of the year’s cold weather and due to this, many pests start to search for a place to keep warm. For this reason, pest-proofing your home is crucial before the fall months arrive in order to keep these pests from turning your home into an animal hotel. Individuals may think that this animal hanging around may not be that big of a deal. Although, this is far from true. Mice, rats, and other rodents can spread germs, bacteria, and disease around your property. This can cause you as well as members of your family to fall sick. On top of increasing the spread of germs, pests that last over the winter can also cause severe damage to homes such as chewing electrical wires and leaving dropping within insulation. This is why it is vital to take steps to ensure that pests will not settle in or around your home such as:

  • Keep food in airtight packaging
  • Repair screens that are damaged
  • When not using garage door keep closed
  • Be sure trash is in sealed container and taken out regularly

 

In addition to taking these steps, it is also very important to understand exactly what to keep an eye out for as well. There are a variety of pests located within the New England states, but these are the most common:

Rodents:

Just like other cities around the world, Boston is home to an increasingly large number of rats and mice. These animals are constantly on the search for food which leads them inside buildings on a regular basis. This is made possible thanks to their ability to squeeze through incredibly tiny holes that homeowners often overlook due to their small size. For this reason, it is important to keep indoor clutter to a minimum so that rodents and their entryways can be easily identified.

Bees:

In terms of identifying an infestation, Bees are one of the easiest to address. The reason for this is that not only are they found in large numbers but they also are quite noisy and often simple to spot. Many species of bees will actually make their nests inside the walls of your home or even inside an attic or basement.

Contact Aboslut Pest Control today for all of your pest removal needs!

Here at Absolut Pest Control, our specialists can help you prepare your home this fall by making sure that it is pest free. Take care of your pest problem today by calling the professionals Absolut Pest Control at 978-388-4589!

Preparing for Autumn: Bat Proofing

What is Bat Proofing?

As August comes to a close, it is the perfect time for individuals to start bat proofing their homes as summer is often too early and the winter is far too late. The term bat proofing sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is as the process is simply identifying and dressing any openings that get into the house. Since these animals are very small, some can fit into holes as tiny as a quarter inch although the large brown bat requires something bigger. These holes act as their doorway in an out of your house during their times of travel. Bats tend to leave the home at dusk only to return before daytime returns.

Bat Proofing Steps

Although it is best to be proactive in order to prevent the need for these practices in the first place. Homeowners can use items such as mothballs to deter bats from colonizing in the home and it is even suggested that putting fiberglass insulation in at their areas of interest will keep bat families away. But If you notice bats coming to and from your house and are afraid that you could already have a colony in your home, locating the entry point is something that should be your top priority. Any small gap, such as where conduit enters the house, chimney flashing, ridge vents, window and door flashing, and areas around the roof line should be sealed immediately with material including. sheet metal, pieces of wood, just buttoning up the siding, a long-lasting caulking, expandable foams, and stainless-steel screening.  If you plan to complete this project on your own, many experts suggest waiting until the end of August, so baby bats grow large enough to be capable of flight. That way, when holes are sealed there no baby bats remaining in the house. But it is best to call in an expert to take care of the job themselves as soon as possible  if actual removal is needed as having a bat family in your home, even just the attic, can lead to issues such as staining and odor problems which are difficult to remove as well as disease causing to humans. In addition to this, bats are a protected species so it is required that a trained professional such as the ones at Absolut Pest Control help you take care of the issue once and for all as well as prevent any harm from happening to the animals.

Contact Aboslut Pest Control today for all of your bat removal needs!

Here at Absolut Pest Control, our specialists are trained in taking care of not only bat removal services but also repairs to make sure that they can never ever reenter your home. Take care of your bat problem today by contacting us now or calling the professionals, Absolut Pest Control, at 978-388-4589!

How to Ward Off Mosquitoes this Summer

Mosquitoes can be a real nuisance once the warm weather rolls in. Regardless of whether you’re enjoying a family barbeque or kicking back on your deck, your time can go from pleasant to agonizing as you swat these buzzing buggers away. If you’d like to keep yourself from becoming a mosquito magnet this summer, follow a few of our tips.

Think Twice Before Exercising Outside

If you’re heading outdoors for some extraneous physical activity, you might want to reconsider. Mosquitoes are attracted to excess body heat and carbon dioxide. If you’re jumping around outside and getting your sweat on, mosquitoes will be more likely to bite you. While the summer months are a great excuse getting outdoors and getting active, be aware of peak mosquito hours to prevent you from becoming a tasty morsel.

Protect Yourself

One of the best ways to protect yourself while outside is to use a bug repellant. The CDC recommends using one that has been registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as those chosen repellants have been evaluated for product efficacy and effects on both the human body and the environment. Use the repellent on bare skin sparingly and keep an eye out for products containing DEET. Also, lemon eucalyptus, a plant oil, is as effective as low concentrations of DEET which makes it another viable option. Once you return indoors, do yourself a favor and wash the repellent off.

Check On the Status of Your Screens

This is an important one because protecting yourself inside is just as important as protecting yourself outside. Take a look around your house at all the screens on your windows and doors to ensure there aren’t any holes or tears where bugs can get through. There’s nothing worse than thinking you’re safe from mosquitoes indoors only to hear a buzzing in your ear or seeing one land on your arm. Keep mosquitoes outside where they belong by making sure your window and door screens are doing their job.

Want to protect yourself from mosquitoes this summer? Follow our tips! If you can’t seem to shake your mosquito woes no matter how hard you try, get in touch with us. You can reach us by filling out an online contact form or by calling us at 978-388-4589. We look forward to helping you.

Ward Off Pests with Some Spring Cleaning Tips

While spring has technically arrived, the weather is still quite wintery. But, the weather conditions will soon improve and that means we’re getting ever closer to the big spring clean up once winter makes its full exit. While some may roll their eyes or groan about spring cleaning, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s highly effective. After all, winter can be a brutal season, especially on the east coast. Taking stock of your home in the spring can help you spot areas in dire need of attention, areas that if left ignored could allow pests into your home. If you want to maintain a pest free home this spring, give the following areas of your home some love during spring clean-up

Bathroom

One should not have to worry about pests in their bathroom, period. But, if you have moisture issues in your bathroom, you may encounter silverfish or cockroaches, both spring pests, during your morning shower. Since both pests are attracted to moisture, be sure to eliminate open sources of water in the bathroom. Be sure to clean out your medicine cabinet, inspect the bathroom for any leaking moisture from pipes or faucets, and wash your shower curtain and liner.

Kitchen

Nicer weather brings the ants right on out. The first place they’re likely going to invade if they get into your home is your kitchen since it provides ample access to both food and water sources. They will crawl throughout your kitchen in search of crumbs, residue from liquid spills, and overripe fruit left sitting out on the counter. Keeping a consistently clean kitchen is tantamount to keeping pests at a minimum, but there are a few more things you can do to help. Clean out your cabinets and remove old food items, like spices and flour. Those ingredients can attract beetles and ants. Once you’ve cleaned out your cabinets, wipe down the insides for good measure. You can also pull out your appliances and clean behind them, as you’d be amazed at how much is actually back there. Giving your kitchen a good scrub down isn’t a bad idea, either.

Basement

Your basement can be a popular place for spiders and rodents to camp out in, especially because there are corners and clutter they can hide amongst. Going through items in your basement and getting rid of things you don’t need can negate this, as it will provide fewer hiding places. When storing items, don’t use cardboard boxes because they can wear down over time and allow pests access to their contents. Instead, use sturdy plastic bins with secure lids. If you happen to notice any cracks or crevices that give you pause, seal them up with caulk to provide pests with one less access area to your home. You’d be surprised at just how small an opening has to be for critters to get through.

Spring cleaning shouldn’t just be a quick clean up. Spring cleaning doesn’t only get your house ready for spring either, but for summer too. By giving your home a solid inspection, particularly in the areas listed above, you’ll be ensuring strong pest protection for months to come. If you begin experiencing a persistent issue, please get in touch with us. You can reach us at 978-388-4589 or by filling out an online contact form.

3 Signs Your Home May Have Termites

Much to your chagrin, termites remain active year round. Don’t let your mother or your co-workers tell you they go into a dormant state or become less prevalent in the winter, because they don’t. Discovering a termite infestation can be incredibly disheartening and also leave you scrambling for answers on how to solve the problem. After all, if termites are not discovered early, you stand the chance of having to pour a lot of money into repairing your home. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be difficult to recognize your home even has a termite problem in the first place. So, we’ve compiled a list of warning signs you should be on the lookout for. Read on!

Shelter Tubes

You may notice fan-like looking patterns on your walls or foundations. These are termite shelter tubes and they are key to helping termites maintain a dark, humid atmosphere for general development and food storage. Termites typically build these tubes at night and the larger they appear the more damage your home has likely sustained. The shelters are often various shades of brown, and appear earthen and clay-like in appearance. If you’re concerned about termites, take a look at your foundations and walls. Keeping an eye on things could help you avoid heaps of damage.

Frass Piles

Frass, or termite droppings, are minuscule pellets often found near termite entryways. This sign more or less speaks for itself. If you happen to spot a frass pile, immediately contact pest control services so they can get to work on saving your home. Termite dropping piles are a clear indication you have a termite problem on your hands.

Hollow Wood and/or Sagging Floors

Since termites often burrow in honeycomb patterns, they don’t come close to the surface of the wood. Not only does this add to the list of reasons why detecting termites early can be troublesome, but it also means the termites have more time to burrow and wreak havoc. Wood will continue to grow weaker, which may cause your floors to sag or a hollow noise to emanate from your walls when knocked upon. Don’t chalk these things up to your home’s age, either. If your floors and walls were not like this before, contact professionals to get your home checked out.

No one wants to deal with a termite infested home, ever. Unfortunately, Americans pay millions of dollars annually in termite damage. Don’t allow yourself to be part of that statistic! If you begin to notice any of these warning signs or other worrisome indicators, get in touch with Absolut Pest Control. You can reach us at 978-388-4589 or by filling out an online contact form.

Mouse Proofing Your Home This Winter

The winter season and the frigid temperatures that come along with it can make it unsavory to stay outside for long periods of time. Much to your dismay, that also means critters will try and make their way into your home. After all, they need somewhere warm to hunker down too. Mice, in particular, can be a real nuisance for some homeowners. While mice may be cute, they can cause some real damage to your home. Let’s go over a few ways you can mouse-proof your home this winter season…

Store All Foods, Even Your Pet’s

First and foremost, you’re going to need to make sure you’re not providing the mice with a readily available food source. This means keeping your countertops and other surfaces spick and span while ensuring all your other foods are sealed in containers and stored away. It can be easy to overlook your pet’s food during this process, so don’t. Food for your dog or cat is a real draw for mice, so remember to seal and store away your animal’s sustenance as well.

Utilize a Brush Strip

A neat trick for preventing rodents is installing a brush strip to all exterior doors. This way, small gaps at the base (common in older doors) will be blocked off, thus giving mice fewer entry points to your home. Not only are brush strips easy to install, especially the ones with adhesive strips, but they can also help prevent your home’s heat from seeping out through the gaps in the door during the cold months! It’s a win-win.

Elevate Firewood

If you’re big on having fires during the winter, listen up. Your wood pile outside is a fan favorite among our rodent friends. These piles are typical hangouts for mice, which means you should elevate your log pile 18 inches off the ground at the minimum. Not only will this make it much tougher for mice to nestle in amongst the cut wood, but it’ll also keep you from having to completely dig out your wood when it snows!

These are just a couple ways you can go about making your home non-rodent friendly this winter. We’ve still got plenty of cold times ahead of us, so it’s not too late to implement our tips. If you can’t seem to shake your mouse problem, get in touch with us. Fill out our online contact form!

How to Prevent Bed Bugs this Winter Season

The scary thing about bed bugs is that you can pick them up almost anywhere. Just think, you run the risk of encountering the little guys at a hotel, your office, the gym, or even a store. Bed bugs are quite good at hiding and like to hitch rides in your personal belongings when given the chance. Being unaware of their presence is the root of the issue because once they are in your home, they can be a real hassle to get rid of…unless you have help from Absolut Pest Control, of course! Now, you might be thinking that, because it’s winter, you don’t have to worry about bed bugs but you’d be wrong. As long as they have a blood host, they can continue to thrive in colder temperatures. Their bites can vary in severity as well, depending on how you react to them. Check out a few of our recommendations for preventing bed bugs in your home. Don’t forget, these critters can lay up to five eggs a day!

  • Don’t Fret!

While it can be hard to rid yourself of bed bugs, it’s not impossible. Don’t fly into a mad rush to throw all bed sheets and blankets away, as most of those items can be saved through treatment. Not to mention throwing out items can get incredibly expensive. Also, by throwing out your contaminated linens, your increasing the chance of spreading bed bugs to someone else.

  • Be Sure You’re Actually Dealing with Bed Bugs

People will spot fleas or ticks around their home and mistake them for bed bugs. This causes a lot of unnecessary panic and stress, so we suggest comparing the insect you’re seeing in your home to pictures of what you suspect it to be on the internet. This can help clear up a lot of general confusion. If you still find yourself unsure of what you’re dealing with, get in touch with us and we’ll get to the bottom of your problem.

  • Reduce Hiding Places & Clutter

This is a big tip, as a cluttered living area provides bed bugs with ample spaces to hide. Not only will a cleaner living space make it harder for the bugs to conceal themselves, but it’ll likely improve your quality of daily life too. If you’re currently dealing with an infestation, it’s a chance to clear out your space albeit under undesirable circumstances. Simply cleaning won’t be the answer to all of your bed bug problems either, but it’ll certainly aid the situation and help prevent future issues.

  • Regularly Wash Bed Sheets, Blankets, Bedspreads, and Clothing

Bed bugs can hide and lay their eggs in both your clothing and laundry hampers/containers. Remember to clean your hampers and containers on a regular basis to reduce the risk of hidden bed bugs nesting in them. If you often leave articles of clothing in a pile on the floor when they are dirty, these rules especially apply. The goal when preventing bed bugs is to remain vigilant on the cleaning front.

Bed bugs can seriously drag down your time at home, especially the most important hours when you should be sleeping. If you suspect you’re dealing with a bed bug issue, utilize our tips and contact us to terminate said problem. Don’t let the winter months lull you into a sense of critter complacency. Remain vigilant and keep your home clean! Contact us if you’re at your wit’s end.