It’s fall in Minnesota and that means two things. Kids are heading back to school and outdoor pests are fattening up and heading back inside your home for the winter. There is an abundance of different pests that become more active in the fall, and once it starts to get a little chilly at night they know it’s time for them to fatten up and start moving inside for the winter. Some of the most common Minnesota fall pests we see are boxelder bugs, Asian lady beetles, stink bugs, voles, and mice. We will be going over the science behind these fall pests and their behaviors. We also want everyone to know when the best time to call BOGO Pest Control is to keep any unwanted guests from moving in during winter.
Boxelders are the most common insect to see an abundance of in the fall. Boxelders at this time of year can be found on the south side of homes and crawling along on boxelder trees. These are the trees that release helicopter seeds. If you have a tree in your yard or one of your neighbors does, don’t be surprised to see boxelder bugs around your property. They eat the helicopter seeds for food. The beginning of fall is the perfect time to treat them because that is when they are starting to migrate into more sheltered places to overwinter. They most commonly try to hide underneath the siding, cracks along windows, door frames, and fascia boards which is why lots of people start noticing them inside during the winter. But once they are already spotted inside it is too late to treat. BOGO pest control recommends treating around the 2nd week and 4th week of September.
Asian lady beetles are also a common fall insect and are commonly seen inside during the winter. Asian lady beetles, people commonly misidentify them as ladybugs but these beetles are invasive species that came over to the U.S. from countries such as; China, Russia, Korea, and Japan. They were first brought to the U.S. to help farmers with protecting their crops against harmful plant pests such as aphids, scales, and other soft-bodied arthropods. In the fall the beetles start migrating away from outdoor fields and gardens to more protected areas to spend the winter. Most residential homes in Minnesota make the perfect hideaway for them. You will see the largest amount of activity during the afternoon and they are attracted to illuminated surfaces. Just like the boxelder bugs, the Asian lady beetle also tends to congregate on the south side of buildings where it is the sunniest. They also find their way inside the same way as the boxelder bug. Under the siding and cracks around doors and windows. BOGO Pest Control’s fall treatment for boxelders will also help in eradicating the Asian lady beetle.
Another invasive species found in Minnesota is the stink bug or also known as the brown marmorated stink bug aka BMSB. Stink bugs just like the Asian lady beetle also came to the U.S. from Asia. They have become more prevalent in Minnesota just in the last few years. The very first sighting in Minnesota was recorded in 2010. Just like the rest of the pests mentioned before stink bugs are attracted to the warmest areas of the home and in the fall are searching for areas to enter the home to overwinter. One unique behavior of the stink bug is that many of them tend to find their way inside through chimneys. Some recommendations to keep them out would be if you have a direct vent fireplace to install a Termination Cap Cover to help keep the stink bugs out. Another great way to keep them out is to call an exterminator like BOGO Pest Control to come to spray the chimney and the home so that when the stink bugs land on the home they will die from the product after about 30 minutes.
A commonly misidentified fall pest is the vole. Here at BOGO, we get many calls from concerned customers saying they have been seeing mice running across their lawns during the day while their outside. But as soon as the customer reveals that these sightings are happening during the day and only outside we know right away that they aren’t seeing mice they are seeing vols. Mice are nocturnal so they are more active at night, unlike vols. Vols are active all day and night. Another easy way to identify a vol is to look at the tail. Vols have much shorter tails than mice and have fur on their tails as well. Vols also live outside all year long and aren’t interested in going inside. They’re only interested in wreaking havoc on your lawn. They tunnel under the snow in the winter, and chew on the roots of grass, on the bulbs of flowers, and bark around trees. Vols love living in areas with heavy ground cover. Inside long grasses, retaining walls, and also near ponds and river banks. To prevent vols from destroying your lawn during the winter we recommend having BOGO Pest Control come in the fall to place bait stations along the perimeter of your lawn. These stations will be filled with poison bait blocks that the vols will eat and die from before they can eat any of the lawns or plants. It’s important to note that the vols will only eat enough poison to kill a vol so the poison in the vol’s system won’t be enough to kill any larger predators. A few recommendations that we give our customers to keep vols from making themselves feel at home is to trim back any bushes and other low-hanging shrubs so that they aren’t touching the ground. It’s also helpful to continue keeping your grass cut low and especially in the fall on your last time mowing to cut the grass lower than usual and to pick up any leaves and sticks that could also be used as areas for vols to keep warm during the winter. BOGO’s outdoor rodent management plan consists of us coming every month or 2 months (depending on the amount of activity) to refill the stations as needed. To continue managing the population we check them all year long including in the winter.
Last but not least the fall pest that wreaks the most havoc out of all the pests listed is the mouse. Mice during the fall season are also looking to go into homes for warmth. There are multiple different types of mice in Minnesota but only a few are commonly found going inside homes. The most common mouse to find inside homes is the house mouse. If you do see one to identify it, look to see if it has large ears, a thin tail, and pink feet. The next most commonly found mouse is the eastern and white-footed deer mouse. The eastern deer mouse is easily identifiable by its large black eyes, gray or brown fur, and white feet. You can tell the difference between a white-footed deer mouse by the white fur on its bellies and its reddish-brown fur or gray fur on top. Most mice once they are inside the homes commonly build their nests in the foundation walls, attics, and basements and spend most of their time out of sight of humans.
What BOGO Pest Control has to offer for mouse prevention is very unique in the pest control industry. We offer a full exterior exclusion service. What this consists of is first, a very thorough inspection of the property. Our team will look for any major entry points around the property and take photos of the entry points that will be sent to the customer in an email invoice that will include a quote for the exclusion. The tech will also mention if any limitations block their view of the foundation rendering the possibility of missing an entry point. If the customer wants us to seal the house a tech will come to the property for a second time to seal all of the entry points around the house as well as set up snap traps in any unfinished areas in the home. But the technician will not just seal the entry points in the photos but spend a couple of hours looking for any other possible entry points that could have been missed during the inspection. If any entry points are missed depending on the home’s limitations, BOGO Pest Control either offers a full 2-year warranty. If there are limitations such as a porch we can not get under we offer 2 visits within two years. The warranty will kick in 30 days after the seal-up was completed. The reason for this is that there will most likely be mice trapped inside the home after everything is sealed from the outside. It will take about 30 days to trap the mice stuck inside. BOGO Pest Control is not looking to sign a customer up on a contract to come every month to fix the mouse issue; we want to make the mouse problem go away for good.
BOGO Pest Control should be your one-stop shop for all the fall pests in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the suburbs. We will spray to keep the insects from moving inside over the winter and our exclusion service for mice is bar none the best mouse service you will find in Minnesota.
Click below to learn more about BOGO’s signature mouse service and for helpful tips to keep mice and vols away from your home
F. Potter, Michael, et al. “Asian Lady Beetle Infestation of Structures | Entomology.” Uky.edu, 2017, entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef416.
Hutchison, Bill. “Brown Marmorated Stink Bug.” Extension.umn.edu, 2022, extension.umn.edu/yard-and-garden-insects/brown-marmorated-stink-bug.
“White-Footed and Deer Mice | New York State Integrated Pest Management.” Nysipm.cornell.edu, nysipm.cornell.edu/whats-bugging-you/rodents/peromyscus-species/#What%20Do%20Peromyscus%20Look%20Like?. Accessed 5 Aug. 2022.
Brittingham, Margaret C. “Voles.” Penn State Extension, 5 Jan. 2007, https://extension.psu.edu/voles.