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Mixing Snow and Pest Control in Seattle

Here in Seattle, we don’t get a lot of snow. When the weather reports start suggesting we may even get a ¼”, though, we start preparing frantically – and here’s a few things to add to your list! In the spirit of organic pest control (how else will we keep the Emerald City green?), these are all things you can do around your home without an ounce of rodenticide or the need for snap traps.

  • Garbage containers: When it snows, foraging for food becomes a difficult task for rodents, especially in urban areas like Seattle where they may be eating scraps left on the ground. Pest control professionals everywhere highly recommend firmly securing your garbage container – the extra effort to take out the trash during the snow event may be rewarded by it staying in the garbage can.
  • Make sure all outbuildings are sealed: Rodents are desperate, much like us good Seattle folk, to avoid the cold, wet misery of a Pacific Northwest snow. If they can’t get into your home (and if you’ve been following our blogs, they shouldn’t be able to), then they’ll try for your outbuildings next – garages, sheds, dog houses, etc. Make sure that you’re not leaving out food in these structures (put dog food in a closable bin, etc.) and that they’re well sealed. Deer mice, in particular, like to get into sheds and build comfortable nests, much to the frustration of pest control technicians everywhere. These mice, although darling, can be a vector for the Hanta virus, a nasty bug that causes very, very serious health problems (and sometimes death).
  • Feeding wildlife: It’s cold outside, and the squirrels and birds can appear hungrier, lonelier, and sadder than ever. We understand that you want to feed them – we’re compassionate Northwesterners too! We recommend, however, moving away from your structure to do so – go to a park to distribute food, or far into the backyard. If rodents catch wind that you’re giving out a free meal, they’ll be more drawn to your home (and they steal the food from the intended recipients anyways).

These tips come straight from our in-house entomologist, who also reminds me that slippery sidewalks can be a dangerous pest during these snowstorms, too – so watch out!


Be safe out there,



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