Sun setting over the snow covered mountains and pine trees in Lake Tahoe

Where do pests go in the winter?

Baby, it’s getting cold outside! Have you ever wondered what happens to all the annoying pests when the temperature starts to drop? Surely they can’t survive the below-average temperatures.

So where do they actually go in the winter?  Some pests bother you all summer long, and then when it gets cold out it seems they just disappear. Or do they actually? Let’s take a look at a few of the most annoying pests and see if and how they survive winter. 

Worried about pests in your home? Contact us today!

Man, woman, and their dog relaxing in recliners in front of a lit fireplace.

Can pests survive the colder temperatures?

All species of pests in the world handle the cold differently. Some have antifreeze proteins in their body that help them survive the cold while others look for warmer places to shelter like your home. Bed bugs, rodents, cockroaches, and scorpions are a few types of pests that either bother you all year long or hibernate during the cold. Can you guess which ones are looking to warm up in your home?

Bed bugs

Unfortunately, bed bugs stick it out in the cold. Well, they actually don’t like the cold, which is why they are more prevalent in the summer months, but they don’t die in the winter. In fact, if you notice signs of bed bugs in your home, you should contact us for service right away. Bed bugs can survive for months without a meal, so if they are warm and cozy in your home, they’ll probably stay there all winter long. Although they are still active, there is a lower risk of an infestation if you are traveling in the winter months as they won’t necessarily be looking to hitchhike a ride.

Close up of a brown and orange colored bed bug on a white background.

Rodents

Rodents are alive and well during the colder months. They will try just about anything to get into your house when it starts to get cold, which is why making sure your home is prepared for the winter is very important. When the temperature starts to drop, mice and rats will begin to eat larger amounts of food to help them maintain a warmer body temperature. After their big meal, they’ll look to make their way indoors for shelter and warmth, and your house is usually a perfect option. Our exclusion service is the best way to keep rodents out, and even if you think your home is rodent-proof, it never hurts to have extra protection!

Close up of a grey and brown rodent sitting in the white snow.

*Tip!* Rodents will also look to seek shelter in your vehicles, so check under the hood of your car or truck, as mice and rats can cause thousands of dollars in damages by gnawing through electrical wiring.

Cockroaches

Yet again, here’s another pest that looks to come into your home during the winter. Cockroaches thrive in the summer because the humidity gives them the ability to quickly reproduce. In the winter, different cockroach species handle the cold in their own ways, but they all only have one goal: to survive. Many cockroaches enter a hibernation-like phase when it gets colder and they will start to look to make their way indoors through any cracks or crevices in your home. However, the cold temperatures lower reproduction rates, so even though they are still active, there aren’t as many of them around.

Cockroach crawling on a grey wood floor through a doorway in a home.

Scorpions

Scorpions are also looking for warmth and shelter when the temperatures drop below freezing.  Many people think that scorpions die in the winter, but that rumor isn’t true – scorpions are actually just hibernating! Surprisingly, scorpions can actually survive the below-freezing temperatures, but they choose to find somewhere warmer to spend the colder days. (Kinda like us, right?) Most scorpions like to hide by themselves, but some, like the bark scorpion, will nest together in large groups. During winter, scorpions will hide out in or under areas like retaining walls, structural cracks and crevices, and rocks.

Black scorpion standing on a tree stump with a blurred background.

Winterize your home

Though some pests are inactive during the colder months, it is still important to winterize your home to protect yourself, your family, and your property. Here are some steps you can take to make sure pests don’t find a home in yours:

  • Install door sweeps on garage doors and exterior doors around your home and replace weather seals.
  • Seal all entry points from the interior of your home and your garage.
  • Seal all entry points from the exterior of your home using sealant to repair cracks, crevices, and pipe intrusions.
  • Install dryer and stove vent covers to exterior/interior fan vents.
  • Seal all entry points from your attic and install mesh gable and attic vents to the attic area.
  • Install plumbing caps on any accessible pipes.
  • Install a chimney cap to prevent rodents, birds, and other wildlife from entering.
  • Deodorize and replace damaged insulation.

Western will keep your home pest-free all year long

Your Western specialist is here to help and our PestFree365+ program is the perfect solution to keep your home and family protected from pests all year long. With pestfree365 your home will be protected from 36 of the most common household pests – guaranteed! This program includes regularly scheduled services by one of our trained specialists who will thoroughly inspect your home, treat when and where necessary, and provide a detailed report and service.

In addition to pestfree365, we offer other services to prevent pests from entering your home, like our exclusion service for rodents. Let a Western specialist put a plan in place to reduce the possibility of pests making your home their home which will, in turn, protect you, your family, and your property. Contact us for all your pest control needs – both treatment and prevention.

Emily Nicholson

Emily Nicholson is a Digital Marketing Coordinator for Rentokil North America. She currently lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and two dogs. She loves being outside - mountains or beach - and enjoys working out, walking her pups, and relaxing with her husband, friends, and family.

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