While many of us associate insects with the warm summer months, pests don’t just disappear once the temperature drops.

Many different types of pests prefer to dwell in your warm home to escape the freezing cold and can sometimes make their presence known.

Here are some of the most common types of winter pests you may encounter in your Maryland home and tips on preventing them from making a surprise appearance this season.


Rodents are warm-blooded and must constantly eat to survive the harsh temperatures. Therefore, rodents are one of the most common winter pests in Maryland, with house mice and Norway rats topping the list of the most common you’ll encounter.

Some most common signs of a rodent infestation include:

  • Spotting rodent droppings,
  • Chew marks on food packages
  • Scratching noises coming from the walls

Mouse traps are often effective or you can even try using scents, but you may need professional help if you continue to see these signs of rodents in your house.


While certain types of beetles may be hardy enough to survive colder temperatures, there are several kinds that prefer to spend the winter months indoors.

Elm leaf beetles and Click beetles are two of the most common types of beetles you may see in your Maryland home during the winter months, as these beetles are more likely to seek out warmth and shelter during the winter. Don’t worry, they are completely harmless, though they may give you a fright every now and then.

Box Elders

Box elders will travel up to two miles a day to find a suitable place to spend the winter months. During fall, you will even begin noticing them resting in the sun on the south or west side of your house to stay warm as the temperatures drop.

These pests often make their way into homes through cracks in the foundation, open doors, or windows that are not properly sealed shut. While you may notice a lot of these bugs in your home during the winter months, they will typically die out by the spring.


Spiders in Maryland don’t do well during the cold winter months, which is why you may notice more of them in your home during this time of year. Spiders go into a state called diapause, which temporarily shuts down their growth and reproduction for a certain period of time. Spiders will typically come out of diapause once temperatures start rising again, typically around 40 degrees.


Out of all of the household pests on this list, you may notice ladybugs more than other types of bugs in your home during the winter months. Ladybugs are known to appear in homes during the colder months in search of warmth and shelter, as they cannot survive the harsh winter conditions.

These bugs also prefer to hibernate in groups, so you may see several at a time around the house.


While termites are typically less active during winter, you may still notice them in or around your home this time of year. Termites do not do well in extreme temperatures, meaning that most of them will either seek shelter deep in the ground or inside homes.

If you notice termites in your home at any point during the year, it is crucial that you contact a pest control professional immediately to get rid of these notoriously difficult pests.

Stink Bugs

Like spiders, stink bugs also go into diapause during the winter months, which is why they will often appear dead if you spot them around your home. Stink bugs are known to congregate around heat sources, making them gravitate towards the warmth and safety of your home.


While ants do not hibernate during the winter like other insects, they will typically seek shelter during the colder months by digging deep into the soil outside or finding their way into your home. It is said that seeing ants in your home during the winter months means that you will likely have ants during the warmer months as well, so be sure to keep an eye out for these pests year-round.

Winter Pest Prevention Tips

Unlike the warmer months when bugs are more active, it is easier to defend against bugs during the winter if you use the prevention tips:

  • Keep firewood covered and away from your home
  • Seal any cracks or crevices in your walls (possible entry points for pests)
  • Fix leaky faucets
  • Keep trees trimmed and branches away from your home
  • Properly store food
  • Regularly dispose of trash away from the home in a bin with a lid
  • Maintain landscaping, especially as the leaves fall

The Importance of Seasonal Inspections

While many people wait for spring and summer to get their homes inspected for bugs, pests can be active in your home year-round.

Seasonal inspections ensure your home is protected for 365 days and that you have consistent peace of mind. Contact your local exterminator about different packages they offer for seasonal pest inspections and treatment.


What Attracts Bugs to Homes in Winter?

The biggest reason that bugs make their way into homes during the winter is to seek shelter from the cold temperatures outside. Many of these pests cannot survive the harsh winter temperatures, which is why you may be seeing more in your house during the colder months.

Do Ultrasonic Pest Repellent Devices Work for All Insects?

Ultrasonic pest repellers are popular devices that many homeowners have turned to in order to get rid of bugs. While some people have claimed to have success using these devices, many reviews from homeowners and pest control experts have been mixed.

These devices may be worth a try if you are looking for alternative ways to get rid of pests but remember that they may not be the most effective compared to other methods.

Are There Bugs That Thrive in Extreme Cold?

While most bugs prefer to spend their winters hibernating or inside people’s homes, there are a few insects that have been known to be able to withstand some pretty low temperatures. Stink bugs and cockroaches in Maryland can typically survive colder temperatures compared to other bugs, but even they will eventually die off if the temperature dips below a certain point.