Hurricanes are bound to happen, especially in Florida. These natural phenomena can cause severe damage to our community, homes, and the environment around us. Unfortunately, hurricanes will also affect pest activity, as homeowners might see the emergence of even more pests. After a hurricane, we will often experience a population increase of pests that thrive in warm, moist environments. Check out our list of pests to look out for after a hurricane and what you can do to prevent them.
One of the most common pests that emerge after a hurricane is mosquitoes. The water that’s left behind by the storm will provide the perfect breeding ground for these pests. While mosquitoes are a nuisance, they can spread diseases such as the West Nile virus, Zika virus, and dengue fever. To prevent these pests, consider the following:
- Remove objects that can collect rainwater including toys, buckets, tarps, old tires, and more.
- Try and remove as much yard debris as soon as possible to help create little to no air movement to avoid adult mosquitoes.
Other pests that will emerge after a hurricane are ants. When an area becomes flooded, it forces ants to seek out a new place to inhabit, often leading them to our homes. Ants, such as fire ants, Argentine ants, and carpenter ants, can all be difficult to control, as they can establish their new colony quickly and are highly adaptable. To avoid ants from invading your home after a storm, place these preventative measures:
- Seal all cracks or gaps found on the interior and exterior of the home.
- Remove and clean up any food source that may attract ants inside.
Cockroaches will thrive in the aftermath of a hurricane. A home or building that’s flooded provides the perfect environment for these pests, where they can settle, breed, and multiply. Roaches are known to carry diseases and even trigger allergic reactions. To deter roaches from your home, consider these DIY measures:
- Eliminate as much moisture as possible by regularly checking for leaky faucets or sinks.
- Take the trash out on a regular basis and place it in a tightly sealed trashcan with a lid.
Hurricanes can have a significant impact on our environment and the activity of household pests. Placing preventative measures throughout your home before a hurricane or rainstorm will help to prevent a full-blown pest infestation. If you’re still seeing pests after taking precautions, it could be time to contact your local pest control company for help. These professionals will inspect your home, identify the pest, identify areas of entry, and provide you with a treatment and prevention plan that’s fit for your home.