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11 Critters And Insects That Lurk In And Around Our Homes

We love our homes. We spend time making them cozy and comfortable, and we take great pride in them. Unfortunately, all that effort doesn’t always get the kind of attention we were hoping for. Animals and insects love our homes almost as much as we do! While some of these may be temporary visitors that have gotten themselves in over their heads, others are determined to become our roommates. So who may we one day meet inside?

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1. Spiders


This is going to happen. Spiders are everywhere, and there is little we can do to avoid them completely. They like our homes because we provide some great areas for them to hang out. Do you clear out your cabinets and ceiling corners every week? Of course not, and neither do I! That’s just what spiders like. There’s no wind or rain to tear up their webs, and they can hang out in one spot for as long as it takes for us to notice.

2. Mice


Mice will eat almost anything. As a result, they think your cabinets are heaven. The food is easy to get, there’s always too much for them to eat, and all they have to compete with are these big, slow moving, bald, pink things (that would be us). We, however, are not quite as fond of them. Yes, they love us and they’re cute. They’re also destructive little disease monsters, which makes them slightly less cute. Traditional mouse control is highly recommended when you start finding those little pellets around the house.

3. Stink Bugs


The new bane of our existence, stink bugs seem to be everywhere. These clumsy, prehistoric-looking bugs come inside for the winter but only in colder climates. Elsewhere, they don’t have much reason to be inside and will reproduce throughout the year. However, if you have a large number of indoor plants, you may find yourself more susceptible to them.

4. Lady Bugs


Guess who else comes inside for the winter… ladybugs! Some people consider ladybugs good luck, but when one room after another becomes infested, it doesn’t feel much like luck. On top of that, if they come once, they’ll come again and again and again.

Ladybugs are a little bit unusual. They come in because they need a safe place to sleep away the winter. Once one decides that your house will do, it releases pheromones to let the others know. In a little under a week, you can lose an entire room to these little things! It may seem like the nightmare is over once they venture out for spring, but those pheromones are still around.

They’re in the walls, under the floorboards, and in every nook and cranny you can think of, plus some that you can’t. Most likely, they’ll be back again next year unless you have a professional cleaning job done.

5. Raccoons

Raccoons may be adorable little bandits outside, but inside they are sneaky, smart, destructive and dangerous. Again, the main reason they’ve gotten into your house in the first place is usually for one simple reason – food. They can rip straight through the plaster on walls and create little tunnels for themselves, so watch out!

6. Opossums


On the opposite end of the cute spectrum, we have opossums! If you’ve never seen one, count yourself lucky. These things look like large, albino rats. In reality, they’re the only marsupials that are native to the U.S.A. They are also mean, territorial and carry diseases. If you find them inside, they’re probably there for the same reason as the raccoons. One thing opossums love is cat food. They probably won’t be staying in your house, so put a bit out in the backyard. Opossum traps are available as well for safe/friendly methods of controlling wild animals like opossums. They may be full before they can get to your home.

7. Termites


Speaking of terrible things that can happen – have you ever had termites? Of course, no one wants termites. Out of all the animals and insects on this list, this is probably the only one that can actually destroy your entire house. Does it seem strange that I’m referring to a tiny insect and not thousands of pounds of angry elephant?

Well, a single termite doesn’t pose much of a threat (unlike the elephant) but a colony spells trouble. Colonies can range from a few thousand termites to over a million. They’re in your home for one reason and one reason only – they’re eating your wood. One thing is for sure, if you have enough of a problem to notice any kind of swarm or disintegration of your wood, you need professional help.

8. Ants


Ants love sugar. People love sugar. Therefore, ants love people… or at least, ants love people’s food. These commonly annoying insects don’t pose a huge danger to anyone, but you probably don’t want them around your house either.

Ants are like ladybugs. One guy goes out and scouts for food. When he finds it, he leaves a pheromone trail for his buddies to follow. This is why ants are always in line; they’re all following the same trail. If you pick a spot and rub the path with a little water, you’ll break it. Then you can watch the ants get confused. They won’t know where to go, or what to do. Result – find out where they’re getting into your house and interrupt the trail there. Give them a separate food source (sugar water, perhaps) and they’ll drown themselves without ever getting inside.

9. Fleas


If you have a pet, you are at risk for fleas (sorry, Spot). Fleas are terrible. If you have them, you’ll know because everyone will be scratching, all the time. These tiny little black or dark brown bugs would prefer to feed off your cat or dog, but if they’ve been treated they will hop to you. If you’re not sure if you have them or not, try walking around your house with bright white socks on. Fleas are attracted to the color and will hop on, making themselves visible.

10. Bats

Now, I’d like to make one thing clear. If you have bats, it is entirely possible that you don’t actually know you have bats. You could have bats for months and not realize it! Bats aren’t going to stay someplace that has a great deal of activity during the day, but if you have a little used attic or shed they can get into, you may have some visitors. Slight disturbances to their nesting site is usually enough to convince them to find somewhere else to roost.

11. Squirrels

Unlike bats, you’ll probably know right away if you have squirrels. This will go one of two ways. The first, and most likely way, is that the squirrels will discover how nice and cozy the insulation in your attic is.

The second, and less likely possibility, is that your squirrel doesn’t know where he is, how he got there or how to get out, and he is just as unhappy about the situation as you are! A little coaxing will mostly likely have the squirrels out, and even if they’ve made a home, they’ll often switch it up.

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