How Do Bugs and Spiders Survive the Winter?

Bugs can be a real nuisance. Take termites for instance. They're estimated to harm about 600,000 homes in the U.S. every year. Because it usually takes the help of pest control services and exterminators to get rid of the creepy crawlies, things like bed bug and termite damage can cause a real nuisance financially and practically speaking.

What do you think happens to bugs and spiders when the winter comes? Those pests that bothered you in your house and backyard all summer long seem to disappear from your consciousness as soon as the temperatures drops, but that doesn't mean they're really gone. Find out where they going during these chilly, chilly months here:

  1. In Your House: You may wonder how, when spring comes, you find lots of baby bugs inside your house, even though you could have sworn you haven't cracked a window for months. Well, bug eggs have been hibernating and living inside human dwellings like your home, keeping warm and safe until conditions were right for them to emerge. This is yet another reason why it is so important to seal cracks in your exterior and interior.
  2. Winter Cluster: Some animals cluster to stay warm all winter long. Confused about what that means? Think penguins: they stand in a rotating cluster that keeps body heat inside, and every penguin gets a chance to be the center of all that warmth. Bees and other insects also survive in winter clusters.
  3. In The Ground: Of course, bugs survived before humans built houses. Some die, but lay eggs that hatch in spring. Spiders often "hibernate" by building a dense web under bark or some other covering, and other insects burrow underground where they surround themselves with warm nests.
  4. Migration: Some insects, like the beautiful monarch butterflies, simply go where it's warmer for the summer. Monarchs are unique in that they're the only insect that travels more than 2,500 miles to a warmer climate. Other types of moths, beetles, and aphids also migrate.

As long as your correctly insulate your home and make sure you properly dispose of all your food, overwintering insects probably won't bother you too much. But if the warmth of your home in the depths of winter prematurely wake up too many of those critters, you might want to call an exterminator.