Preparing for Pumpkins and Pests

The leaves are starting to change and soon your lawn may resemble a perfect fall palette. There’s a childlike joy that comes from autumn activities. It’s the season of roasting hot dogs and marshmallows by the bonfire, camping in the cool, crisp air, and jumping in big piles of colorful leaves. These should be carefree experiences, but before you lean into the cozy nostalgia, we encourage you to consider the lurking pests also interested to snuggle up this season. With the right protections in place, you can enjoy all the best elements of the colder weather with the ones you choose.

Don’t Leave Your Leaves

It may be tempting to keep a blanket of red, orange, and yellow sprawling across your once-green yard, but leaves provide the ideal cover for a multitude of pests. Allowing piles of leaves to accumulate on your property for more than a few days can be the ultimate invitation to ants, beetles, rodents, and snakes to explore a new abode.

Though they are small, ants are the gateway pests to larger and more vexing critters. Ants seeking to fulfill their basic needs will find bliss in an autumn lawn where moisture and shelter are in abundance.

Prevent your property from housing nature’s food chain by following these steps:

  • Rake leaves away from your home or business. Ants seeking refuge may find your yard a comfortable place to overwinter.
  • Clean up any food spills inside or outside. S’mores lead to insects and insects lead to s’more problems.

Dispose of yard waste promptly. Fall foliage serves as prime nesting material for mice and rats as well as a feast of vegetation and insects.

Rodents bring an appetite and curiosity with them wherever they go, so dime-sized holes are also major draws for mice and rats looking for their winter getaway. Nature’s food chain means that where rodents venture, snakes aren't far behind. Unless you’re planning to open your property to disease-carrying, dangerous creatures, we recommend plugging any visible holes with steel wool and getting your home inspected on a quarterly basis.

Bagging your leaves within two days of raking will also contribute to the health and safety of your loved ones. For a dose of mental health this season, get a few great jumps into your freshly raked piles of leaves or toss a few handfuls in the air.

Shut Out Spooky Spiders

Another one of our favorite ways to celebrate the season is to decorate. From creepy cobwebs to marvelous mums, there seem to be two types of fall enthusiasts. Despite their differences in decor, folks tend to agree that live spiders may be pushing fall decor a bit past festive. We’ve experienced our fair share of spooktacular sights and want to share a few tricks to ensure you enjoy nothing but treats this season:

  • A sensational fall starts with citrus, cedar and cinnamon. These fragrance oils are inviting to guests, and more importantly, repellent to pests.

  • Be mindful when you pull out your fall decorations or camping gear from the back of your shed, garage or attic. Spiders tend to hide where they feel safe and have a source of food. A disturbing shift of their environment could lead to a nasty bite.

Secure your property with a cracks and crevices treatment. Spiders look for cozy places to spend the winter and your crawlspace or basement is an alluring spot for females to lay their eggs.

Safeguarding your property throughout fall and winter will stop you from saying, “Oh my gourd!” next year when overwintering pest populations hatch. We recommend year-round protection from spiders like Brown Recluses and Black Widows whose venomous bites are incredibly dangerous.

Ghost Pests This Season

McCauley Services believes one nuisance is one too many and the best protection against all things creepy and crawly is prevention. Don’t allow overwintering pests the chance to scare you this season. McCauley Services technicians receive continuous training to provide the best possible experience, so the thought of pests will never haunt your nightmares. You just have to know one thing: who you gonna call? McCauley Services.