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Aggravating ‘Overwintering’ Insects

It’s fall. The days are growing shorter, the temperatures are dropping, and certain groups of insects are starting to show up in and around homes all across Illinois. Not all homes find themselves invaded, but many will, and when they come, look out—they come in large numbers.

These trespassing bugs are overwintering insects. They’re looking for a warm, cozy place to hunker down for the winter as dormant adults, and they hibernate just like bears. If they choose a place that is the right temperature, they’ll be ready to go back to the trees outside come spring.

The temperature they need for resting is between 40 – 50° Fahrenheit. The perfect spot would be between the inside and outside walls of your home. However, due to their insect-sized brains, they often blow it and end up inside of your house instead of simply inside your walls.

Although none of these pests are harmful, they definitely rate high on the scale of aggravation. Here are some common overwintering bugs you may find in your home this season:

Boxelder Bugs: These small bugs are black with red edges on their wings. They can fly up to two miles looking for a good spot to spend the winter, and they have been known to enter homes by the thousands. They’re especially problematic in areas with lots of boxelder trees.

Western Conifer Seed Bug: This insect is found near evergreens as they like to nibble on the inside of conifer seeds. Adult bugs are ¾ inch long, brown on top with a yellow or light orange abdomen. They have a loud buzz that resembles a bumble bee, and they tend to enter homes in large numbers.

Cluster Flies: We often think of flies as a summer problem; however, cluster flies like to make their debut in autumn. These large, hairy flies congregate on the sunny side of your home while searching for overwintering sites, and you may find them flying around inside your home in large numbers throughout the winter.

Pesticides do not easily kill these bugs. You’ll have better luck trying to manually remove them, perhaps with a vacuum cleaner (just be sure to throw out the bag or completely freeze it). Your best chance is to leave these aggravators to the professionals at Pointe Pest Control. They’ll easily and safely rid your home of all unwanted, overwintering invaders.