Did you know that the spotted lanternfly has been in the US since 2014, but just recently began to pose a serious threat? This invasive species can cause significant damage to the agricultural industry, along with forests and landscaping.
Even the spongy moth, which looks like a small, harmless bat, contributes to costs hundreds of millions of dollars worth of damage every year.
But how do you avoid getting overrun by invasive species? This article explains some key ways to bug-proof your home and garden to help prevent the spread of invasive species.
Keep reading to learn more.
Drain, Dry, and Clean Your Boat
If you have a boat, always clean, dry, and drain your boat after use. The same goes for fighting gear and waders.
Since rivers and lakes harbor invasive aquatic species, you might take home a dangerous species.
They reproduce extremely fast and can lead to clogs in intake pipes. Some invasive parasites may lead to closed beaches, rivers, and lakes.
Since these species can be difficult to see and can live for up to 30 days in damp environments, you need to clean and drain your boat or water gear to prevent the spread of invasive species and larvae.
Choose Certified or Local Firewood for Fires
Unfortunately, invertebrates can attach themselves to firewood. As you transport it from one location, you run the risk of introducing invasive species into new areas. This is why you need to burn local or certified firewood only.
Clean Your Boots and Shoes
If you enjoy hiking, you’ll want to remove plants, dirt, and bugs from your shoes before entering and exiting your home. This prevents you from transporting invasive species to and from your home.
You want to rid your shoes of pathogens and weed seeds that can pose an issue in a new environment.
Check Your Dog’s Paws
Do you take your dog everywhere with you? If so, you want to check your dog’s paws for invasive species. You can wash their paws off in the yard before bringing them inside, or give their coat a thorough once-over.
Your dog can carry fleas, ticks, mites, and lice, so bathe them regularly.
Ways to Bug-Proof Your Home
Now that you understand some ways to prevent the spread of invasive species, you can work to bug-proof your home. Although it’s always best to consult a professional pest removal service, you can make small changes at home to help reduce the incidence of invasive bugs at home.
Every window and door that opens should have a screen on it. You need 20 mesh or finer to keep out the vast majority of insects.
Unfortunately, leafhoppers and aphids can still get through this size screen. The only way to keep them out is by keeping your windows closed.
If you haven’t already done so, you need to install door sweeps at the base of exterior entry doors. You don’t want to see any light underneath your exterior doors. Always use a rubber seal as vinyl doesn’t hold up well in the winter.
Fill Gaps and Cracks
To prevent rodents and insects from infiltrating your home, you need to fill gaps and cracks. However, it can be difficult to find these cracks. This is why you need a professional pest removal company to locate points of entry you may have overlooked.
If you do notice any gaps, you can use a latex-based caulk. If the gap is too large to caulk, you can fill the hole with sheetrock or wood.
Repair Leaky Faucets and Piping
Leaky pipes provide water sources to pests. When you repair leaky plumbing, you reduce water availability, making your home less hospitable.
Wire mesh is another excellent way of preventing pests and invasive species from infesting your home. You can install it in crawl spaces or over attic vents, for example. However, the wire is very sharp, so you’ll need to wear gloves and exercise caution when attaching it to openings.
Airtight Food Containers
One way of keeping ants out of your kitchen is by using airtight storage containers. You can also store food in the refrigerator or freezer to keep bugs at bay.
Always keep counters clean, vacuum crumbs, and keep your sink free from dishes.
Clean Your Yard
You should remove exterior clutter from your home’s foundation, including grass clippings and leaves. Clean out your window wells and gutters. If you have shrubs or trees near your home, prune them to reduce entry points for bugs and other pests.
When you plant flowers, you encourage beneficial insects to nest in your garden. If you plant alyssum, for example, you’ll attract flower flies and other small parasitic wasps. Look for native shrubs and wildflowers when planting a garden.
Perform Routine Maintenance
Every so often, walk around your property and look for signs of invasive species. You can also look for nests or anything else dangerous.
If you come across an invasive pest, you should immediately contact a pest removal company. They know how to safely and effectively remove invasive species from your property.
Prevent Invasive Species Today
Now that you know how to prevent invasive species from wreaking havoc on your home and yard, you can follow the preventative measures in this article to keep them at bay.
However, not all invasive species can be prevented with DIY measures. This is why you need to contact Pest Management Systems. Check out our special offers and see how we can assist you today.
*While these steps/tips will help reduce the likelihood of invasive species at your home, there is no guaranteed way to eliminate all risks.