Overwintering Pests

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More about Overwintering Pests

In Honolulu, you may experience overwintering pests. You may not realize it until it is too late, but these pests are sneaking into your home to stay warm during the winter. Although overwintering pests can take shelter elsewhere, they often shelter in attics, wall voids, and elsewhere in your home. The overwintering pest category is home to several pests, which will be explored in greater depth below.

Common Overwintering Pests

Which pests overwinter? In our service area, we commonly deal with the following overwintering pests.

Boxelder Bugs

During spring and summer, you’ll need to protect your garden from boxelder bugs. They eat the seeds belonging to several trees including boxelder trees. Before winter arrives, boxelder bugs will look for ways to stay warm during the winter months. When possible, they’ll sneak inside of your home using small cracks and gaps.

Boxelder bugs are usually half an inch in length with black bodies. They aren’t dangerous since they won’t bite or transmit disease.


Multi-colored Asian Lady Bugs fit into the overwintering pest group. They are identical to native ladybugs, but they’re different. They’ll try to enter your home, and they can nip your sink. Despite not being dangerous, Asian lady beetles need to be removed from your home promptly.

Cluster Flies

Although cluster flies spend most of their lives outside, they may enter your home before winter. They begin life as a parasite in an earthworm. When they become larvae, they will emerge and live outdoors. Cluster flies prefer sheltering behind loose tree bark and wooden planks. They’ll enter homes when possible. When the temperatures increase significantly, cluster flies will return outside. If you haven’t dealt with the problem yet, you’ll have a mess to clean up.

Leaf-Footed Pine Seed Bugs

Leaf-footed pine seed bugs are one of the worst overwintering pests, but they’ll only produce a new generation annually. Adults will reach up to three-quarters of an inch so they’ll frighten you. When it is warm, these bugs will stay outside and feed on pine cones. As winter approaches, they’ll search for shelter. They may hide behind the bark of conifer trees, but they’ll also try to enter your home. They can do so using small gaps and cracks. Once the warmer temperatures return, these bugs will head outside.

They aren’t dangerous, but their large size will concern you.

Stink Bugs

Brown marmorated stink bugs are growing and spreading across the country. They have a shield-shaped back and grow up to half an inch. Stink bugs are native to Asia and entered the United States in the mid-90s. Now, they’re one of the most common overwintering pests in the United States. When it is warm, they’ll stay outside and consume vegetable crops, ornamental plants, and fruit trees. Before winter arrives, they’ll scramble to find shelter.

They may enter your home so they can survive during the colder months. They’re not dangerous and won’t bite. However, they will release a stinky odor when crushed and scared.

How To Know You Have An Overwintering Pest Problem

Are you concerned that overwintering pests are living in your home? They could be and you might not realize it. To find out, you need to carefully inspect your home. Overwintering pests can enter through small cracks before entering your bedroom, kitchen, living room, and bathroom. If they’ve entered your home, they’re likely trying to go outside because temperatures have risen. If it is warm outside and you have beetles, boxelder bugs, or cluster flies in your home, you have an overwintering pest problem.

The pests will return again so you need to come up with a plan to keep them out.

Preventing An Overwintering Pest Infestation

The best solution to overwintering pests is to prevent them in the first place. Stop them from entering your home and you won’t have to deal with the aftermath. You need to start by searching your exterior walls for gaps, cracks, holes, and crevices. Sealing these completely will reduce the likelihood that pests are going to enter your home and create a headache for you and your loved ones.

Screen Gaps

  • First and foremost, you should target small entry points. Block all potential entry points will reduce the risk that overwintering pests can sneak into your home.
  • Keep your house pest-free by closing these entry points immediately.

Ask About Protective Exterior Barrier Treatment

  • Protective barrier treatment is a good way to stop pests from approaching your property.
  • Get help from a professional because they’ll use industrial-strength material to keep pests away from your property.
  • A professional’s product will work better and last longer.

Common Entry Points For Overwintering Pests

Mortar And Brick Joints

When searching your home for gaps, don’t forget to check your bricks. You’ll find gaps on the bricks. If these gaps are not filled, bugs will use them to climb inside of your attic. Close these gaps using a sealant.

Check Window Frames

When your windows were installed, the installer likely caulked the top and sides of the window. They might’ve left the bottom untouched since water shouldn’t seep through. However, it will be an opening for pests. With that being said, seal this gap using caulk.


Check the clapboard on the exterior portion of your home. Since it has an uneven surface, you’ll find gaps at the top. Filling in these gaps with caulk will help. Alternatively, it might be easier to use a foam insulating cord.

Attic & Soffit

You likely have attic vents. They help control the humidity in the attic. These vents should be covered by screens. If those screens have cracks or holes, they’ll let bugs sneak inside. They need to be replaced immediately or bats and bugs will climb into your attic.


Any gap or hole needs to be sealed. Otherwise, you’re going to let pests enter your home. Finding a way to seal the smallest gaps can be difficult, but not impossible. An effective way to fix the problem is by filling the hole using used pot scrubbers. You can use pot scrubbers to fill gaps around vents, cables, and pipes. For instance, you’ll need to look at the plumbing pipes coming into your home. If there are gaps around the pipes, fill them with pot scrubbers.

Don’t forget that we’re here to help you. If you want to keep bugs out this winter, we’ll help. Call us today and ask for a free inspection.

What Can I Use To Stop Overwintering Pests?

When dealing with overwintering pests, you’ll want to use exclusion materials. These products are designed to stop pests from entering your home. They’re also referred to as pest-proofing products. Although you’re dealing with overwintering pests, exclusion materials can block all pests from accessing your home.

Caulk Or Sealant?

  • Using caulk is best when the surface won’t experience movement. For instance, caulk will work best for sealing the gaps on bricks.
  • When dealing with surfaces that will expand due to temperature changes, use other sealants.

Other Materials To Use

  • Stop pests from entering your home by using foam insulation. Avoid the spray home because it is difficult to clean up later.
  • Use an aluminum screen to deal with holes of various sizes.
  • Hardware cloth can help fill gaps as well.
  • When dealing with gaps around utility lines, pot scrubbers can help.

Do you need help protecting your home from pests? Contact our office so we can tell you more about our pest-proofing services.

If you have any other pest control issues please check out other services.

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Overwintering Pest (Cluster Flies)