The season is upon us…for un-festive Christmas pests. We all love to put our decorations up, dust off the artificial tree or choosing our own fresh-cut tree to put in our living rooms this festive season.
However, insects, spiders and their eggs can be bought into your home so easily on trees, wreaths and firewood. Any eggs laid outside in foliage and then bought inside will quickly hatch because of the warm temperature of your house. It may only take several days for eggs to hatch, and insects will emerge in dense clusters. Birds may have also nested in them too, and any leftover nesting materials may contain parasites such as mites, or insects such as beetles. None of these creatures will cause you any harm, but it’s always best to prevent them from entering your home in the first place if you can.
There are some really simple steps you can take to keep bugs away this Christmas:
1. Give a fresh cut tree a good shake before you bring it into your home. This will not only help remove loose needles, but will dislodge any insects and their eggs too.
2. Inspect the branches of your tree carefully, and remove any nesting material that you find their, if it hasn’t already been shaken out.
3. If you have a real fire, store all your firewood on a raised platform at least 20 feet away from your house, and always check any wood for pests before you bring it indoors.
4. If you do happen to notice any insects on the walls or windows when your tree is inside, quickly remove them with the hoover.
If you keep your decorations in cardboard boxes or bags in loft or garage all year, then you may find they’ve attracted a little furry guest. Take all the boxes outside and inspect them carefully before you bring them in, checking for holes and any signs of gnawing or droppings. Any wires for tree lights should be properly checked too, to avoid a potential fire hazard.
Dispose of any decorations that have been messed with by mice, because they carry diseases and may spread them through your decorations. Once Christmas is over for another year, pack away your decorations in sturdy, durable containers with sealed lids so that pests can’t chew through them.