Keep your home pest free this spring by following these tips.

Winter is finally coming to an end! Here in the Westfield area, it won’t be long until leaves are budding, grass is growing and you’re finally stepping outside to break that cabin fever! But beware! This is also the time of year when bugs start becoming active again. Don’t let those bugs invade your home and ruin your spring fun! Consider these ant (and other pest) prevention tips!

Inspect Your Home’s Exterior

Winter can do a lot to your home. Heavy snows, storms, expanding ice and ice dams can all cause small cracks and fissures in your home’s exterior, roof, windows, siding and foundation. When the snow melts and temperatures begin to warm, inspect your home for any damage or wear that may have occurred over the winter. Carpenter ants, termites and other small pests can gain entry through even the smallest gaps. Be sure to seal any cracks and fissures you find. Windows can be especially susceptible, so be sure to examine your window caulking to ensure it hasn’t deteriorated.

Also, inspect any vents to be sure that appropriate screens are installed and in good repair to prevent pest entry.


Inspect Trees and Shrubbery

Winter can be especially hard on vegetation in your yard. Be sure to clear away dead shrubbery and any fallen trees and branches. Consider trimming shrubs back from your house if they are making contact with the exterior.


Move Firewood Away From Home

Have you been burning wood this winter? Wood stoves are popular in places like Hampden and Monson, however be sure to move that firewood away from your home! It can be a breeding ground for a number of pests, including termites, and if it’s close to your home, those pests can make their way inside.


Look for Bee Hives and Nests

As the weather warms, you may begin to see the early development of beehives and nests, especially as spring turns to summer. Pay careful attention to the eaves and corners of your home for developing nests and inspect your attic and other crawl spaces in and outside of your home.

If you find a hornet, wasp or yellowjacket nest developing, consider calling a pest control professional. Nests here in Western Massachusetts, even when small, can be dangerous if mishandled.


Spring Cleaning

A good thorough cleaning, in and out of your home, can go a long way to preventing pests. By eliminating potential food sources, you can often prevent the problem before it begins. Thoroughly cleaning in and around your kitchen, including under and behind appliances as well as in your pantry, can eliminate food particles that would have otherwise gone unnoticed. Also, be sure to inspect under your sink for leaking pipes, as mold, mildew and rot can also be a pest food source.


Lastly, consider securely storing your trash and other refuse in locking lid container. Trash containers can be a feasting ground for pests ants and other creepy crawlers, and if your trash isn’t well sealed, you’re inviting them in for dinner!

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