Common Pests in Vancouver During The Fall and Winter Season
Fall and Winter in Vancouver brings changing leaves, cooler weather, and unfortunately, a lot of unwelcome pests into homes and buildings.
Fall and Winter in Vancouver in the fall sees an influx of pests seeking shelter as a result of temperatures dropping and food sources dwindling outside. Cracks, crevices, and openings in homes provide easy access points for insects, rodents, and wildlife. Vancouver’s mild fall climate allows many pests to remain active longer compared to other regions.
Plentiful vegetation and water sources also support robust pest populations year-round. As nights get cooler, pests instinctively know to seek out warmer indoor spaces with available food, water, and shelter. Vancouver’s proximity to wooded areas and green spaces also provides a constant source of pests like mice, squirrels, and raccoons invading nearby homes.
As temperatures drop, many insects, arachnids, and rodents seek shelter indoors, where it is warmer. This comprehensive guide covers the most common fall pests in Vancouver, reasons for increased activity, prevention tips, and safe removal methods.
With careful prevention and removal, Vancouver homeowners can stay pest-free this fall despite the area’s abundance of insects, arachnids, and nuisance wildlife driven indoors by changing seasons.
Common Winter and Fall Pests in Metro Vancouver
Ants become more active in the fall as they forage for food to survive the winter. Sugar and grease are attractive to ants, who follow scent trails into kitchens and other areas where spills may occur. Carpenter ants may also enter walls or wooden structures in fall to nest or overwinter, which makes ant control more important.
- Caulk cracks and seal entry points outside the home
- Clean countertops and floors to remove sugary spills ants are attracted to
- Store food in airtight containers.
- Use ant baits or traps rather than spraying, which causes colonies to spread
- For carpenter ants, use protein-based baits as they feed on insects, not sweets.
- Dust entry points and nests with diatomaceous earth for safe, non-toxic removal
Yellowjackets become more aggressive in fall as their food sources disappear with cold weather. They build nests in wall voids, attics, and hollow trees, emerging when disturbed.
- Seal cracks and holes in siding where nests may be built
- Cover trash cans securely and avoid leaving sweet drinks outside
- Do not disturb nests yourself; have a professional remove them.
- Treat nest openings with dust insecticide for safe elimination
Spider activity increases in fall as males leave webs to search for mates and females seek sheltered spots to overwinter. Common household spiders like wolf spiders may wander indoors during this time making spider control at this time of the year more important.
- Install tight-fitting screens on windows and doors3
- Remove clutter like piles of wood or stone away from home’s exterior
- Apply outdoor barrier treatment to deter spiders from entering
- Use a vacuum cleaner to remove individual spiders
- Insecticidal dusts in corners/crevices kill spiders entering from outside
Mice seek the warmth of indoor spaces as outside temperatures drop in fall. They enter through any openings larger than 1⁄4 inch. Mice contaminate food through contact with urine and feces which makes mice and rat control one of your top priorities.
- Seal all possible entry points with weather stripping, caulk, steel wool.
- Clean up all food spills right away
- Store food like pet food in chew-proof containers.
- Use snap traps or live traps to capture and remove mice
- Rodenticides should only be used with extreme caution to avoid poisoning pets
Squirrels become more active in fall as they search for food to store for winter, often invading attics or walls. They chew on electrical wires, insulation, and stored items, causing extensive damage making squirrel control an important task.
- Seal attic and soffit vents using hardware cloth, caulk, or metal sheeting.3
- Trim overhanging branches to prevent access to the roof
- Apply repellents like coyote urine around entry points
- Use humane traps baited with peanut butter to capture and release squirrels
- Install one-way exclusion doors so squirrels can exit but not re-enter
Some bees remain active into fall and may enter structures in search of an overwintering site. They build hives in wall voids, attics, sheds, or hollow trees.
- Seal cracks and crevices with caulk early in the season before hives are established
- Avoid swatting or aggravating bees, walk calmly away
- Contact a professional to relocate or remove bee hives – do not do it yourself.
- Dust insecticide powder into hive entrance overnight to kill colony
Hornets enlarge their nests in fall before dying off, except for fertilized queens that overwinter. They deliver painful stings if disturbed.
- Seal openings in walls, eaves, and attic vents where nests are built
- Keep trash cans covered and avoid food outdoors
- Spray hornet nest openings with insecticide dust at night
- Knock down nests with a pole or water jet, then remove debris
Thousands of cluster flies may enter homes in fall, clustering on windows. They breed in earthworms and emerge in fall to overwinter indoors.
- Seal cracks around windows, doors, and siding to exclude flies
- Use fly paper near windows and vacuum up flies daily
- Insecticide dusts or sprays applied into wall voids kill developing flies
- Remove flies with a vacuum then dispose of bag immediately
Some honey bees remain active in fall and may enter structures seeking shelter1. They rarely sting unless provoked.
- Seal cracks early before bees establish hiveshives.
- Avoid swatting bees and walk calmly away.
- Contact a beekeeper to relocate non-aggressive hives
- Dust insecticide at night into hive entrance to kill bees
Asian Lady Beetles
Asian lady beetles enter homes through cracks and crevices to overwinter in large aggregations1. They do not damage structures but can stain surfaces with secretions.
- Caulk and seal any exterior openings
- Install tight screens on windows and vents
- Vacuum up beetles entering the home
- Set up traps with pheromone attractants near problem areas
Carpet beetle larvae feed on materials like wool, silk, leather, and dried foods indoors. They leave behind obvious damage with patches and holes.
- Clean frequently to remove hair, skin flakes, and food debris they feed on
- Store susceptible items in airtight plastic containers
- Apply insecticide into carpet edges and baseboards
- Heat treat infested items like rugs or furniture to kill larvae
The European chafer beetle has become an increasingly problematic lawn pest across North America. These beetles lay their eggs in grass during the summer months, which then hatch into larvae that feed on grass roots through the fall and winter. By late summer and early fall, birds like crows can be seen ripping up infested lawns as they forage for the chafer beetle grubs, although it is often raccoons who do the most digging.
- Aerating, dethatching, fertilizing, overseeding bare spots
- Maintaining proper mowing height and irrigation
- Apply beneficial nematodes in summer months can kill grubs already in the soil
- Apply long-lasting insecticides to eliminate grubs –
- Rake up dead grass and reseed damaged areas in the fall to allow the lawn to recover by next year.
- While chafer beetles can certainly damage lawns, following best care practices and implementing removal methods at the first signs of infestation can help restore grass to its former health.
Boxelder bugs invade homes by the thousands in fall to overwinter, leaving messy droppings on walls and curtains1. These red and black insects emit a foul odor when crushed.
- Caulk cracks in foundations and install screens over vents
- Remove female boxelder trees near the home
- Apply insecticides around potential entry points in early fall
- Vacuum bugs from walls and window sills
- Catch bugs on glue boards placed inside window and door frames
Mosquitoes remain active well into fall in Vancouver’s mild climate, seeking out water sources to lay eggs in and warm-blooded hosts to bite. While peak mosquito season is summer, populations stay robust through September and October. Certain species like the Northern house mosquito thrive in cooler weather. Mosquitoes continue breeding in stagnant water and bite to obtain protein from blood to produce eggs.
- Eliminate standing water sources like bird baths, old tires, buckets, and other containers where mosquitoes can breed
- Change water in fountains and pet dishes frequently
- Use EPA registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus when going outside, especially early morning and evening
- Wear loose, long sleeved clothing and pants when outdoors to cover exposed skin
- Keep screens on windows and doors in good repair to prevent mosquitoes entering the home
- Use mosquito traps containing attractants like CO2 or octenol to lure and trap mosquitoes
- Hire a pest control professional to treat property with larvicides that kill mosquito eggs and larvae in standing water
- Apply residual barrier sprays around the perimeter of the home to kill adult mosquitoes on contact
- Consider mosquito fogging by professionals to kill flying mosquitoes over a large area for special outdoor events
Bed bugs remain a year-round threat but become more active in fall as they hitchhike into homes on luggage, furniture, and clothing. Infestations spread rapidly and bed bugs bite at night, causing itchy welts making bed bug treatment a very high priority.
- Inspect secondhand furniture thoroughly and quarantine items after traveling before bringing them into the bedroom
- Reduce clutter where bed bugs hide, encase mattresses in covers, and apply diatomaceous earth around baseboards
- If you suspect bed bugs, contact a reputable exterminator like Pesticon Pest Control for an inspection using detection dogs and treatment with non-toxic methods like heat or cold treatment
- Discard infested mattresses and wash/dry all bedding and clothes on high heat to kill bed bugs and eggs
- Vigilance and early intervention are key to stopping these persistent fall pests.
By following the prevention tips and removal methods outlined above, Vancouver homeowners can defend against the most common fall pests. Be especially vigilant in sealing cracks, installing screens, removing food spills, and clearing clutter from the home to deter insects, spiders, rodents, and other unwanted visitors this season. With proper IPM techniques, we can coexist safely with local wildlife while still protecting our homes.
Why Professional Vancouver Pest Control Treatment is Your Best Defense Against Fall and Winter Pests
With the influx of pests entering homes and buildings in the fall and winter, it can be tempting for homeowners to try DIY removal methods. However, pest control is best left to the professionals. Hiring a licensed company like All Green Pest Control ensures effective, long-lasting elimination of pests using industry expertise and proper application of products.
Professionals have the knowledge to identify pests, locate nests and entry points, and customize integrated treatment plans for your specific situation. They use the latest techniques and green, eco-friendly products to get rid of pests while preventing future infestations. Attempting removal yourself can inadvertently spread pests or cause structural damage. Plus, professionals have specialized equipment and can access tricky areas. For safe, effective fall pest control in Vancouver, trust the reliable experts at All Green Pest Control.
How Local Vancouver Pest Management Service All Green Pest Control Can Help With Your Fall and Winter Pest Issues
All Green Pest Control provides effective, eco-friendly pest control and wildlife removal services throughout Metro Vancouver, including Richmond, New Westminster, Coquitlam, Burnaby, and North Vancouver. Their team of licensed, experienced technicians can address any pest issue in single and multi-family homes as well as commercial properties in these cities and surrounding areas.
All Green utilizes integrated pest management techniques customized to each customer’s situation for long-lasting elimination of pests. No matter what type of pest problem you face, you can rely on All Green Pest Control’s expertise, green products, and outstanding customer service when tackling invaders in Richmond, New Westminster, Coquitlam, Burnaby, greater Metro Vancouver, and North Vancouver areas.