As the temperature drops you’ll probably begin to notice more bugs all of a sudden. No, it’s not necessarily your fall décor that’s attracting them. It’s the warmth of your home. See, insects are cold-blooded creatures, but that doesn’t mean they like or function well in the cold.
How Bugs React to Cold Temperatures
Like reptiles, cold-blooded bugs take on a temperature that’s similar to their surroundings. We mammals have to layer on protective gear to stay warm, but bugs seem to just soak the cold right in. However, a drop in degrees does have an affect on their functioning.
For most bugs the cold has a significant impact on how they function. They can keep creeping and crawling around, they just go at a slower pace. Insects will also develop much slower when it’s cold out, which is a concern for bug parents that are busy laying overwintering eggs in hopes that they’ll hatch when it warms up in the spring.
When it dips below 50° F many bugs just can’t survive. They will go into a dormant state where everything barely functions to keep them alive. If the temperature drops below freezing most insect species will die. Oddly enough, the overwintering eggs and cocoons usually have enough protection to keep the next generation of bugs alive and kicking even when the temperature drops into the 20s.
What Insects Prefer in the Fall and Winter
Even though bugs can handle the crisp fall and early winter weather, that doesn’t mean they like it. Virtually all types of insects thrive and develop faster in warmer weather, and given that they can actually die if it gets too cold insects are going to take action to avoid it whenever possible.
Like birds some insects will fly south for the winter to escape the brutal, freezing temperatures up north. This alone can cause an increase in the local bug population in some areas in the south. When fall sets in bugs will also move closer to homes that are radiating heat. Sometimes simply hanging out on the exterior of a home is enough to warm them up a few degrees. However, if they can get inside bugs won’t pass up the opportunity to sneak in.
Bugs have many sense organs, particularly in their legs and antenna. These sense organs can detect temperatures and even humidity. It’s another key survival strategy since even the slightest amount of moisture can cause freezing. For that reason insects prefer to find a warm, dry place to overwinter if at all possible. Sounds kind of like the inside of your home, right?
This is why keeping up with regular pest control treatments is important even when the bug population is shrinking. Because the more bugs and eggs that hide out around your home in the fall and winter, the more bugs you’ll see get active in the spring. If you want to take care of the migrating fall insects give Vulcan Termite & Pest Control a call. We offer monthly, bi-monthly and quarterly treatments that keep bugs away during every season.