Winter Pests: Where do the insects go in the cold?

When winter times comes, you may notice that the amount of insects that are bugging you significantly decrease. Like all animals, insects have found a way to adapt to the cold winter weather.

Here are the several different ways that insects adapt to the winter season:

  1. Avoid the cold weather completely – Some insects just do not live in climates that have cold weather (the tropics).
  2. Migrate – Like birds and other animals, some insects migrate to warmer weather. An example of this is the monarch butterfly which can travel 50-100 miles a day and can migrate from up to 2,800 miles away!
  3. “Hibernate” – You may know about bears that hibernate but insects go dormant in the winter, too. The process is called “diapause.” Some butterflies and mosquitoes go through this process.
  4. Get underground – The best way to avoid the winter cold is to burrow underground. Some insects will avoid the freezing temperatures by hiding in soil or even underneath the newest blanket of snow. These locations provide enough shelter from freezing temperatures, which is enough to survive.
  5. Life Stage – Some insects will choose the winter months as a time to lay their eggs. By doing this, the eggs are able to survive the winter (as long as they are in a sheltered location) and they avoid predators.
  6. Survive – Some insects are able to adapt to the cold by producing their own “anti-freeze” and others are able to reduce the amount of water in their cells to avoid freezing.
  7. Rely on others – Some insects are parasites and will stay attached to a host during the winter. As long as their host survives the winter, the parasite will stay alive.
  8. Slow down – Aquatic insects and insects that require to be aquatic in their larval stage will stick the winter out in ponds, lakes, streams and other bodies of water.
  9. Enjoy the weather – There are some insects that will actually stay just as active in cold weather as they would during the other seasons. Some of these insects include a winter stonefly and a type of springtail called the snow flea.

winter insects

You might also notice that some insects will use the winter as opportunity to enter your home. Insects such as termites, bedbugs, ladybugs, beetles, box elders and stink bugs will find a way into your home during the winter

If you need help extracting bugs from your home, give Patton Termite and Pest a call at 316-773-3825 or use our web contact form.

We look forward to hearing from you.