Rats in the Grass: Avoiding Rodents in Your Yard

a little mouse peeking out from the grass

Rodents can be a severe nuisance and a health hazard for you and your family. They can damage your property, contaminate your food, and carry diseases. If there are rodents in your yard, it’s important to act immediately before they take the opportunity to enter your home.

Signs of Rodents in Your Yard

Before you seek treatment for rats or mice in the yard, you have to determine if they’ve nested on your property to begin with. So how can you tell if your yard has rodents? Here are some of the main signs to look out for:

  • Rodent droppings.
  • Holes and tunnels in the ground where rats or mice can hide and nest. 
  • Gnaw marks on fences, furniture, plants, or structures.
  • Footprints and tail marks in the soil or snow. You may see them along walls, fences, or pathways.
  • Squeaking, scratching, or scurrying noises at night. You may hear them in your attic, walls, or basement.

Types of Rodents in Your Yard

There are a variety of different rodents that may find their way inside your property and home. Luck for us, only two varieties in Iowa are known for invading from the yard. This would be the house mouse and the Norway rat. Let’s talk more about both species below:

  • House mouse: The house mouse is a small rodent with gray-brown fur and a pointed snout. It can go as big as three inches long and 0.8 ounces heavy. House mice feed on seeds, grains, fruits, and insects, and can enter your house through gaps as small as a dime.
  • Norway rat: The Norway rat is a large rodent that has brown-black fur and a blunt snout. It can get as big as 10 inches long and as heavy as 18 ounces. A Norway rat can enter your house through gaps as large as a quarter, where it’ll look for garbage, meat, grains, and fruits to feed on.

How to Prevent Rodents From Moving Into Your House

It’s never too early to take the right steps towards keeping rodents away from your yard. And by taking proactive action, you can save yourself the bill and hassle of a pest control treatment. To keep rats and mice off your property, you can:

  • Seal any gaps or holes around your house that rodents can use to enter. 
  • Keep your trash cans tightly closed and away from the perimeter of your house. 
  • Dispose of garbage regularly and do not leave food scraps outside.
  • Trim back any bushes or shrubs that touch the side of your house. 
  • Store firewood above the ground and at least 20 feet away from your home. 
  • Remove any clutter or debris from your yard that rodents can use as a shelter or nesting material.

Get Professional Help for Rodent Removal

If you already have rats or mice in your yard, you want to seek professional extermination services while the problem is still manageable. A licensed pest control company can inspect your property, identify the type and source of rodents, and apply the best treatment methods.

Springer Professional Home Services is one of the best pest control companies that offer rodent removal in Central Iowa. They have been serving the area since 1989 and have the experience and expertise to handle any rodent problem. So if you find yourself playing landlord to a crowd of furry, beady-eyed tenants, contact us today and find your peace of mind.

Are There Rodents in Your Car?

A mouse crouches in the snow

Winter in Iowa can be harsh, and while we can bundle up to keep warm, the same can’t be said for pests like rats and mice. They look for warm places to nest and feed, and with that in mind, your car can become the perfect spot. Springer Professional Home Services has been handling rodent infestations for over 30 years, and in that time, we’ve learned that rats and mice will take any opportunity to get indoors, which doesn’t always mean in your home. Sometimes it means in your vehicle. Because of that, it’s important to know the warning signs of rats in your car, the risks they pose, and what we can do to help.

Signs Rodents Have Been in Your Car

Be they rats or mice, rodents are known for three main habits: biting, nesting and defecating. Anywhere you find these three phenomena, you’re likely to find rats and mice as well. Some of the damages are things you’ll be easy to see, like droppings (that may look like coffee beans or grains of rice, depending on the rodent), or tears in the upholstery to get material for nests. These nests will usually be in warmer spots around your car, such as behind heat ducts or under the center console.

It’s vital to contact a pest control company for treatment as soon as you notice any of these signs. With the amount of time we spend in our cars with every passing year, it’s important to ensure the vehicles we drive are operating safely.

The Danger Rodents Pose

The visual signs of rodent damage in your car are concerning. What’s especially nefarious, however, are the forms of damage that you aren’t able to see. If a rat is able to chew at the plastic panels on your dashboard, it’s not too far of a stretch for them to chew one of the vital wires that your car needs to operate properly. If that wasn’t enough, rat and mouse droppings carry pathogens that can cause illnesses like salmonellosis and hantavirus. So, if a rodent makes a nest behind your heat vents, you run the risk of circulating particles of pathogens throughout your vehicle.

You don’t want to put your passengers or yourself at risk. That’s why it’s so important to seek professional pest control treatment before the problem spreads.

Springer Professional Home Services for Rat and Mouse Control

If you suspect rodents in your car, don’t hesitate to act. If you wait too long, there’s a very real possibility of the rats or mice getting into your home. But if you make an effort to clear your car of rodents, only to find more moving in soon after, they may already have a nest in your home. Luckily, Springer Professional Home Services can safely remove existing rodent nests, as well as take exclusionary efforts to prevent future infestations. You can trust the team that has been caring for households in Iowa since 1989 and know that whatever work we do is done with your comfort and safety in mind. To learn more, contact us today!

DIY Ways to Keep a Mouse out of Your House

A mouse pokes its head out from under s piece of furniture in a house.

Iowa’s winters are frigid. It’s true for human residents as well as pests, particularly rodents, who try to get into homes to warm up and gain access to food. At Springer Professional Home Services, our skilled rodent exterminators can get rid of any size or type of infestation. But if you were able to keep mice out in the first place, wouldn’t that be better? Here are some methods you can try to help keep your home pest-free this winter. Please note, however, that DIY pest control is not as effective as professional pest control. But if you’re not ready to call an exterminator or want to wait until you’ve tried everything yourself, here are some techniques to consider.

Non-toxic, DIY Rodent Repellents

Here are four common methods for keeping mice and other rodents away using common household items:

Peppermint oil: Mice don’t like the smell of peppermint. In order to keep them from entering, you can put a few drops of the oil on cotton balls, and then place them near any potential access points or attractants, like unsealed food. Even better, you can plant mint along the perimeter of your property to act as a natural barrier!

Another odor mice dislike is apple cider vinegar. Mix equal parts apple cider vinegar and water and spray it once a month along the perimeter of your home and around potential access points.

Steel wool: Thanks to their strong incisors, mice can chew through many materials. But research shows that they’re unable to bite through steel wool. If you use it to fill potential entry points, it will prevent them from entering your home.

Mice hate the scent of fabric softener sheets. Put one of the sheets inside any openings you find that you think could be entry points for a mouse. Bear in mind, they can squeeze through an opening with a diameter of only ¼ inch. 

Ways to Keep Rodents Out

Mice want what any mammal wants when it’s cold out: food, shelter, and warmth. If you have them, they’ll try to get in however they can. Let’s review some methods you can use to keep rodents from getting into your property:

  • Check your home’s interior frequently for evidence of mice, especially dark corners like attics, basements, and crawl spaces.
  • Locate every potential entry point on the exterior of your home and seal or treat it with the DIY methods above.
  • Keep food in your home covered, sealed, and safely stored.
  • Remove as much clutter as possible from your home, both inside and outside.

Mice won’t want to stay for very long if they don’t have easy access to food or a quiet, dark location to nest. Plus, as an added bonus, taking these actions will make your home tidier and more comfortable to live in.

If DIY Approaches Fail

Even if you follow all these steps, mice or rats might find their way into your home. If they do, Springer Professional Home Services can get them out. Since 1989, we’ve provided trusted extermination services to homes and businesses throughout Central Iowa. We can help rid your home of rodents or any other pests. Contact us today for a free consultation

What Should I Do if I Have a Mouse in My House?

Mouse in Iowa home - Springer Professional Home Services

You’ve heard the scurry of tiny paws across the floor, you’ve noticed a few gnawed-on cords—it’s time to face the facts. You have a mouse in your house. There’s no need to panic, but you do need to take action. Mice have one of the quickest reproduction rates and can cause quite a bit of destruction to your property. Letting the problem go on without taking the steps to get rid of the infestation is downright dangerous, especially considering the health threats posed by rodents. At Springer Professional Home Services, we are committed to providing our communities with the knowledge and resources they need on how to deal with infestations in their home. Read on to learn everything you need to know about getting rid of mice in your Iowa house!

Inspect Your Property For Mice

Before you do anything else, you’ll want to check the area where the mice are congregating. If there’s an obvious point of entry, you’ll need to address it promptly. Delaying action could lead to damage or danger in your home. Inspect the areas where a mouse has been spotted, and check for and repair any damage. This includes:

  • Removing or repairing electrical cords
  • Cleaning up any food or crumbs
  • Removing mouse droppings and sanitizing affected areas

Once you’ve handled the immediate issue, you can begin to formulate your strategy. Focus on problem areas, and don’t ignore signs of a larger infestation.

Mouse-Proof Your Home

After you’ve taken care of problem areas, it’s time to mouse-proof your home. While it may take some time to eliminate the rodents that have already made it inside, there’s no reason to allow any more of their furry friends in your house. Start outside by inspecting the exterior of your home. Seal any cracks in the siding or foundation, and repair loose or damaged trim.

Once you’ve addressed external entry points, move inside and seal any holes with steel wool and caulk. Never underestimate a rodent’s ability to fit through an entry point, no matter how small. When it comes to mouse-proofing your home, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Setting Mouse Traps

Once you’ve eliminated the chances of future unwelcome house guests, it’s time to address your current mouse situation. There are various methods of extermination, but the primary option is the tried and true mouse trap. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • When available, choose a spring-loaded trap over a sticky trap. Mice are alive and can urinate when stuck in a sticky trap, and their bodily fluids can transmit diseases.
  • You may need to try several different kinds of bait on your spring-loaded traps in order to find something that’s appealing to the mice in your home.
  • Position spring-loaded traps perpendicular to the wall in areas with high mouse traffic, like behind a piece of furniture.

Get Professional Mice Control

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, you can’t eliminate the entire mouse population in your home. When damage continues and time drags on, it may be time to call in a professional rodent exterminator. Pest control experts will work with you to not only rid your home of vermin for good, but also to prevent future rodents from infesting your home. Some of the best rodent exclusion tips a professional will provide you with include:

  • Keeping all food in sealed containers.
  • Closing doors and windows when not in use.
  • Repairing holes in siding, foundation, and screens.
  • Using mousetraps in gateway areas like the garage.
  • Scheduling regular pest control services.

If you’re fighting a losing battle against mice and other rodents, Springer Professional Home Services is here to help. Our experts can assess the situation, treat the problem, and protect your home from future infestation. Contact us today to get started!

Watch Out For These Pests This Winter!

Asian lady beetle in Iowa home - Springer Professional Home Services

The winters in Iowa render it nearly impossible for many types of pests to live outdoors as they normally do. While many pests disappear this time of year, overwintering insects and rodents can attempt to make their way into your home. In partnership with PestWorld, the NPMA recently released their 2021 Fall & Winter Bug Barometer® predicting a significant increase in rodent and Asian lady beetle activity this time of year.

With our coldest months still ahead of us, now is the time to learn everything you can about winter pest pressures and what you can do to prevent an increased risk of a rodent problem or overwintering pest infestation. The experts at Springer Professional Home Services are here to help—read on to learn more!

Rodent Activity in the Winter

The most concerning prediction from NPMA’s report is the expected increase in rodent activity this winter. Rodents in particular are known for heading indoors this time of year to wait out the cold months ahead. No one wants to share their home with rats and mice over the holiday season, making it important to implement winter pest control before they get indoors. The biggest concerns of a rodent infestation in your home this time of year are as follows.

  1. With their ever-growing incisor teeth, rodents are constantly chewing on a number of things in your home, electrical wires included.
  2. To build nests, rodents will tear through materials in your home, including your insulation and cardboard boxes.
  3. Rodents can directly or indirectly transmit some of the most dangerous diseases, from rat-bite fever to hantavirus.
  4. Rodent droppings can contaminate food and create a hazardous environment in your home or business.

NPMA Bug Barometer 2021

What Are Overwintering Pests?

An overwintering pest is any insect or wild animal that gets into your property, typically in the fall, for shelter during the winter months. Rather than hibernate during the cold winter, these pests will nest and remain active in your attic or crawl space until spring rolls around. One of the biggest concerns for residents in Iowa is the Asian lady beetle. Before the first frost, adult Asian lady beetles begin to seek shelter to spend the winter. This is why fall infestations are so common as they flock to the sides of your home in the late fall before coming inside. Preventing overwintering pests like these beetles requires implementing fall pest prevention tactics to keep them out.

Winter Pest Control Services in Iowa

With the holidays quickly approaching, the last thing you want to deal with is a pest problem. Especially with NPMA’s prediction of increased rodent and Asian lady beetle activity this year, now is the time to implement fall pest control services. The exterminators at Springer Professional Home Services will work with you to keep pests out all winter. Contact us to get started!

Moles, Voles, and Gophers: What’s the Difference?

A gopher found in Central Iowa - Springer Professional Home Services

If you’ve been noticing small mounds of dirt popping up in your lawn, scattered holes in your yard, or unusual plant decay in your garden, you could be dealing with one of a number of types of rodents that live here in Des Moines IA. Moles, voles, and gophers are all commonly found in the yards of local homeowners, and although they are active year-round, spring and fall are the two best times to try to tame their activity. If you want to learn how to keep these burrowing rodents from making homes out of your yard, read on for expert advice from the technicians at Springer Professional Home Services!

How Are Moles, Voles, and Gophers Different?

Gophers, voles, and moles are all burrowing rodents that thrive in moist, cool soil. Spring and fall see the right amount of rainfall and the levels of temperatures that create the perfect environment for tunneling and ample resources for feeding. However, these rodents have some differences that set them apart from each other. Based on what they eat, they will be found in different parts of your yard:

  • Gophers prefer to eat bulbs and plant roots, thus, they will usually live under your lawn.
  • Voles eat all kinds of plant material, including grass, seeds, bulbs, tubers, rhizomes, and bark. They are much more likely to be seen at the surface than gophers.
  • Moles are carnivores with diets limited to worms, grubs, and various kinds of common insects.

Can I Do My Own Rodent Control at Home?

Now that you know a bit more about these pests, you might be wondering what you can do to prevent them from living under your lawn or garden. Because they spend so much time underground, it can be hard to tell how to best approach your DIY pest control strategies. Some people like to use strong-scented plants like thyme, daffodils, sage, and more to prevent rodent activity.

If you’re already dealing with one of these pests, though, your approach should change. Here are a few at-home treatments that you can try:

  1. Mix a tablespoon of mixed dish soap and castor oil into a quart of water. This can be poured into any burrowed holes in your lawn.
  2. Use gopher mesh or chicken wire to create an underground fence.
  3. Set a trap using apples, carrots, or peanut butter for bait.

Although these are the best ways to trap rodents living underneath your yard, we cannot guarantee that these methods will be successful.

Professional Rodent Control in Des Moines IA

We’ve found that many homeowners in the Des Moines area have dealt with rodent vulnerabilities that they couldn’t find for years on end. With the expert touch of an expert rodent control technician, your problems can go away in a matter of a visit. Our holistic pest inspection process will leave no stone unturned and no pest undiscovered. Contact our team today to find out more about how we can help you and receive a free quote on rodent control!

Winter Pests 101: Common Pests Invading Your Home

Winter pests will try to enter homes in Des Moines Iowa - Springer Professional Home Services

Just like you and your family will be heading indoors to stay away from the cold, so will a few unwanted friends. As winter approaches here in Iowa, you’ll want to protect your home from potential invaders. Rodents and wildlife are common winter pests. Needless to say, no one wants to deal with either. The team at Springer Professional Home Services is here to share all you need to know about the critters to keep an eye out for in the winter—and how to prevent them from getting into your home.

Winter Pests in Des Moines

1. Mice

They may seem cute and cuddly, but one surprise scurry across your foot and your mind will be forever changed about this common winter pest. Mice aren’t just an annoying nuisance. They can be quite damaging to your home and health. Mice typically nest in tiny, dark spaces like attics or crawl spaces. They can chew through drywall, wood, and wires and can cause some pretty serious damage if undetected. Worst of all, mice carry a number of harmful diseases that can spread to your family and pets.

2. Cockroaches

Nothing ruins a cozy evening by the fire like seeing a big cockroach scurrying across the hearth. Cockroaches do best in warm, damp areas, so while running your furnace and humidifier is great for you, it’s not so great for your pest situation. This is especially true as temperatures drop outside. Roaches will do their best to come inside to find a more inviting environment.

3. Spiders

Most spiders try to construct their nests in undisturbed areas like attics, closets, and basements. These options become even more appealing as the weather conditions outside become frigid, windy, and damp. While most spiders are not poisonous, some, like the brown recluse, have venomous bites that are dangerous to humans. As winter approaches and spiders move indoors, you may find that your paths are crossing more often than you’d like.

4. Bed Bugs

You know the saying, “Sleep tight; don’t let the bed bugs bite.” Unfortunately, that wasn’t just mom’s cute way of saying goodnight. As the holidays approach and you travel to see friends and family, the risk of a bed bug outbreak increases. Bed bugs can enter your home on bedding, luggage, and even clothing. As you make your travel plans, verify that your hotels have not had a recent bed bug infestation. Bed bugs can be particularly difficult to eradicate in the winter when beds don extra blankets, quilts, and comforters for warmth.

How to Prevent Winter Pest Problems

While there’s no way to guarantee that you won’t battle some of these pests every now and again, there are ways to significantly reduce your risk. Here’s how you can prevent and deter various winter pests:

Preventing Pests Outside

  • Seal cracks in your siding, foundation, and roof.
  • Properly trim shrubbery and remove excess greenery from landscaping
  • Store firewood away from your home.
  • Remove and dispose of any rotting wood, including old sheds, furniture, and dead trees.
  • Keep trash and recycling bins clean and covered.

Preventing Pests Inside

  • Maintain a weekly cleaning regimen that includes sweeping, dusting, and monitoring for signs of pests.
  • Keep kitchen floors and counters free from crumbs and spills.
  • Remove excess water from basement and attic areas, and limit humidifier use to personal areas of the home.
  • Store out-of-season clothes and shoes in plastic bags or containers.
  • Examine “hot spots” for pests regularly and treat them when necessary.

Annual Pest Control Services

If you’re struggling with winter pests, contact Springer Professional Home Services. An expert on Des Moines area pests, the professional residential pest control experts at Springer can aid in your efforts to rid your home of unwanted guests. Contact us today to learn how we can keep you pest-free this winter and all year long.

Afraid of Rodents and Bugs? 2021 May Not Be Your Year

Springer Professional Home Services in Des Moines IA

Entomologists from Springer’s parent company, Rentokil Provide their Pest Predictions for 2021

READING, Penn. (Jan. 4, 2021) — As if 2020 didn’t present enough challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 could be a banner year for pests around the country.

To help residents prepare for 2021, entomologists from Rentokil used field knowledge and data to provide their predictions for pests in the upcoming year.

1. Rodents, Rodents Everywhere:

With shutdowns across the country, it’s no surprise that rodents are on the rise nationwide. Empty buildings, the scarcity of food and warmer winters have combined to create a rodent apocalypse.

“We’re seeing more rats in urban, suburban, and rural settings because of the shutdowns,” said Marc Potzler, Board Certified Entomologist. “Food sources are cut off, and rats are having to travel to scavenge for food. We’ve seen rats out in public during the day, which is highly unusual.”

Warmer winters have also allowed for mice populations to boom in residential areas as it allows for a longer breeding season and there is a lower population loss due to hard freezes.

“Right now is the perfect time to rodent-proof your home,” said Potzler. “Make sure to repair any gaps on the exterior of your home, such as around garage doors, windows or pipes.”

2. Mosquitoes on the Move:

Mosquitoes populations have been increasing over the last few years. Aedes species, which are disease-carrying mosquitoes, are also moving to new areas. These mosquitoes can carry West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and Zika virus, among other diseases.

“There is an increase of mosquitoes across the country, but notably on the West Coast, and they are adapting each year,” said Eric Sebring, Associate Certified Entomologist. “We have seen evidence of behavior adaptation, where mosquitoes lay their eggs strategically to hatch throughout the season.”

Protect yourself and your family from mosquitoes by removing any standing water on your property. Mosquitoes can breed in as little as one teaspoon of water. Also, wear EPA-approved insect repellent while spending time outside.

3. Bed Bugs:

The chatter about bed bugs was quiet in 2020, but that’s not because they have gone away.

“As people begin to travel again, we will start to hear about bed bug infestations,” said Sebring. “Bed bugs can be dormant for several months at a time, so they can emerge when a food source, humans, become available.”

Bed bugs are considered hitchhikers, traveling from place to place on people, luggage, clothing and other personal belongings. Homeowners and businesses such as hotels, colleges, hospitals, senior living facilities, retail stores, and libraries have experienced problems with bed bugs.

If traveling, inspect the bed by pulling back the sheets to examine the mattress. Check your luggage before packing and unpacking, and look for signs of living or dead bugs the size of an apple seed or black fecal smears.

4. More Time Outdoors = More Pests.

From hiking to gardening to dining al fresco, there is no doubt that the pandemic has forced people to spend more time outdoors.

In 2021, we will see the outdoor pest pressures continue:

Ticks: Ticks are responsible for transmitting several diseases, including Lyme disease, to humans and animals. These small insects are found in grassy areas and in the woods, so it is important to inspect yourself and your pets after spending time outdoors. Cover as much skin as possible while outdoors, wear long pants, long sleeves, closed-toed shoes, and tuck pant legs into socks. Light-colored clothing will also help any ticks you pick up stand out.

Ants: “As soon as the weather starts to warm up, we will see an increase in ant populations,” said Tom Dobrinska, Board Certified Entomologist. “Most of the ants we are dealing with are odorous house ants. When spending time outside, make sure to clean up any food, water or sugary substances and ensure that your home is free of any holes or cracks for them to enter.”

Stinging Insects: Stinging insects, such as wasps and yellow jackets, emerge at the first sign of warm weather, and as warm weather seasons are getting longer, stinging insects have more time to create issues. Make sure you check for nests early in the spring as they are smaller and get early nest treatment. Make sure to keep windows and doors shut, and secure outside bins so stinging insects are not attracted to the contents.

5. Termites Aren’t Going Anywhere

Termites are a pesky problem, and unfortunately, are not going anywhere. Termites can cause extensive damage to structures, especially homes. As people are moving out of cities during the pandemic to more suburban areas, education about termite protection is key.

“We received more calls for termites this past year than we have in many years,” said Potzler. “It’s important to raise awareness for homeowners now to have proactive protection to keep from costly repairs in the future.”

6. Pests in the News:

There are a few pests that will continue to steal the limelight in 2021.

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is an invasive pest that has been making its way across the country since it was first introduced from Asia in 2001. Besides its pungent odor, this stink bug has become a nuisance for homeowners as it gathers in large numbers on the sides of houses and buildings and enters through small cracks in the home. “The brown marmorated stink bug is here to stay,” said Dobrinska. “We will continue to see this species emerge in late spring in large numbers.”

The Spotted Lanternfly will continue to wreak havoc across the Northeast and beyond. The invasive pest, first found in Pennsylvania in 2014, is spreading across the Northeast, with New York reporting its first sighting this year. The pest can significantly damage trees and plants.

“The Spotted Lanternfly is becoming a big problem in the Northeast, and it will continue to spread,” said Potzler. “It can be devastating for agriculture and is a nuisance for homeowners.”

The egg masses look like a smear of mud on trees and outside of homes. It’s important to scrape the egg mass off, put it in a bag with rubbing alcohol and throw it away, and then call the state department of agriculture.

The infamous “Murder Hornet,” also known as the Asian giant hornet, grabbed many headlines, causing homeowners to panic trying to decipher the difference between stinging insects in their yards and this aggressive species. The Asian giant hornet is the largest hornet species in the world, growing up to 3 inches in length. Currently, the Asian giant hornet has only been found in the Pacific Northwest.

“We know that there was one colony found and eliminated in Washington State,” said Sebring. “Unfortunately, if there is one, there will be more.”

While your chances of being stung by an Asian giant hornet are fairly low, the sting can be dangerous as the venom volume is higher, causing more pain. The hives are primarily built underground or in hollows in trees. If you suspect it is an Asian giant hornet or any stinging pests, call your pest management provider to assess the situation as soon as you spot activity.

Seasonal Guide to Pest Infestations

Rodents are a common seasonal pest in Des Moines IA - Springer Professional Home Services

Everyone knows that pests are common in the spring and summer months, but what about in the fall and winter? Infestations actually can spike in the colder parts of the year as pests look to take shelter inside your property. To better prepare yourself for a possible infestation, it’s important to know which pests are common during certain parts of the year. Here in Iowa, we experience pest problems all year long. With information from the NPMA, the team at Springer Professional Home Services is here to share all you need to know about pest seasonality in Des Moines.

Fall and Winter Pest Problems

Our winter months are forecasted to get heavy snowfall this year. According to the NPMA, “Above-average snowfall in the northern part of this region may drive rodents indoors in search of shelter. The mild summer and winter forecast could increase cluster fly activity indoors.” Other pest problems to expect in the fall and winter months ahead include cockroaches and spiders. Because pests will want to shelter indoors to escape our cold temperatures, it’s important to protect your home from them entering.

Winter pests in the North Central United States map

Spring Pests in Iowa

Pest activity springs back into action once winter comes to an end. Blooming flowers, warming temperatures, and heavy rainfall encourages pests of all kinds to resume activity and reproduce. Here’s the ones to keep an eye out for:

  • Termites. Every spring, termites leave their nests to mate and start new colonies. This is called “swarming”.
  • Ants. Certain ant species will forage for food in the warmer months. Rainy weather also drives ants out of their colonies and into homes for shelter.
  • Bed Bugs. While these are a year-round problem, increased traveling in the springtime always leads to an increase in bed bug activity.

Summertime Pest Infestations

The summer months in Iowa bring about a lot of pest activity. Summer temperatures cause many types of pest colonies to mature and grow in size. Stay on the lookout for the following pests:

  • Mosquitoes. These parasitic insects lay more eggs in the summer and tend to be our biggest pest problem this time of year.
  • Stinging insects. Wasps, bees, and hornets are at full force in the summertime. They can build nests near residential areas.
  • Flies. Summer is the peak breeding season for flies. They are infamous for being a nuisance at outdoor summer events.

Seasonal Pest Problems in Des Moines

The nature of our climate year-round leads  It’s important to know which pests to keep your eye out for in order to prevent a seasonal pest problem. At Springer, our residential and commercial exterminators can work with you to ensure you are protected from pests all year long. Call us today!

Rodents Turn Rampant During the Coronavirus

Rodents are entering Des Moines IA homes during the pandemic - Springer Professional Home Services

Every year, Des Moines residents deal with an influx of rodent problems in the fall. This year, the infestations are worse than ever due to the coronavirus pandemic. This is mostly due in part to the restaurant closures—the lack of food sources for rats and mice has caused them to be more aggressive in competing for food sources. And now with the weather changing, they will be drawn inside your own home not only to escape dropping temperatures outside but to look for food. This Rodent Awareness Week, the team at Springer Professional Home Services is here to help clear the air about rodents during the pandemic and to provide tips on preventing them. Keep reading to learn more.

What to Know About Rodents During the Coronavirus

Rat and mouse sightings may be at an all-time high right now, but thankfully there’s no reason to worry about them spreading COVID-19. The main concern with rats and mice currently is that they are getting more aggressive in nature, can carry other diseases, and could cause damage to your property.

The shelter in place shutdowns caused an uptick in residential rodent sightings as rats and mice became bolder in their hunt for resources. This has since caused an uptick in infestations and rodent-spread issues. While they won’t transmit COVID-19 to you or your family, rodents still can spread other diseases including hantavirus, salmonellosis, and many more. An infestation can also result in structural damage to your property, making it all the more important to prevent them.

Prevent Rodents With These 5 Tips

To avoid an infestation, it’s important to know how to make your property less appealing to rodents in the first place. Here are our top tips:

  1. Securely store your food. Place all food in tight-fitting containers with lids.
  2. Seal holes around pipes. Use caulk or wire wool to cover up gaps and openings near pipes and other openings.
  3. Cover vents. Install mesh screens on your vents. Also, consider installing screens on doors and windows.
  4. Use tight lids on trash cans. Rodents love to rummage in the garbage! If possible, keep your trash cans sealed and stored.
  5. Protect eaves. Fix any damaged roofing and use wire mesh to seal gaps in your eaves.

Are Rodents More Dangerous During the Pandemic?

While rodent infestations are on the rise, they remain as dangerous as ever. The last thing you want is their germs and destruction inside your property. If you need assistance safeguarding your home, the experts at Springer can help. Contact our rodent exterminators today for help!