There are many reasons why you should hire a professional to treat your home or business for bugs. But one additional reason to consider it if you live in the state of Florida is hurricane season. Many people think that pest number decrease after a hurricane, but it is actually quite the opposite. With heavy wind and rain and advancing floodwaters, many creatures are driven from their homes and have to seek out new, dryer places to live. This includes creatures like bats, opossums, raccoons, mice, rats, fire ants, snakes, squirrels, as well as any fleas or ticks that might be hitching a ride on the backs of these animals. And the damage to your home or business after a big storm is the perfect gateway for them to enter and take up residence as your new roommate. So what can you do about it?
Before the storm hits, you should examine your home for any weak spots. Before hurricane season even starts, take some time to walk around the outside of your home and make note of any cracks in or around the foundation. Examine the weather stripping on all doors and windows. If you can see light coming through, then creepy-crawlies can get through too. Look for any spots where water might be collecting. If there is standing water in your yard, you should work to correct the drainage so that water can flow freely. And standing water is an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes. Standing water can also cause damage to your foundation allowing termites easy access to your home. Also make sure that all trees and shrubs are trimmed away from the house. You must leave a gap of at least six inches to prevent bugs and rodents from entering your home. Make sure there are no branches hanging over your roof. Not only does this give critters like raccoons and squirrels an easy ramp onto and then into your roof, but in a hurricane this could also cause further damage.
If you has to evacuate your home at any point, first you will need to inspect your property to make sure that the home is safe to reenter. Verify that there are no downed power lines or major structural damage that would make the home unsafe. Once you are able to gain entry to the home, here are some things to do:
- Remove all food from your refrigerator and freezer
- Clear debris and yard waste from the yard
- Remove fallen leaves at least 20 feet from your home
- Repair any cracks or holes in the home
- Repair any damaged window or door screens
- Make sure that vent caps are properly secured
- Take the trash to the curb as soon as possible
- Make sure all garbage and yard waste is properly sealed so it does not attract any more pests
If you need any help ensuring that your home has not taken in any unwanted creature guests, give us a call to have your home inspected and treated.