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Common Valentine’s Day Pests: Keep the Love Bugs Away

Common Valentine's Day Pests
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. You plan an ideal date. You pick a great outfit, prepare a delicious meal, light candles, and choose mood music. Everything is perfect! But before your sweetheart arrives, other unwanted guests appear. Don’t let your efforts become a nightmare because of the arrival of bugs. Here are common winter house crashers, advice on how to keep them away, and suggestions for what to do if they arrive.


Though most won’t harm you, spiders become a nuisance when they nest in your home. They enter through crevices and/or cracks and live where it’s dark and warm, in cellars, basements, closets, garages, attics, and the corners of the room. To prevent them from entering:
  • Seal cracks/crevices in your house
  • Replace torn screens and broken windows
  • Keep your home clean
  • Keep your house well-ventilated
  • Remove visible webs using a vacuum or broom
  • Reduce their food source by removing other insects/bugs
If you already have an infestation:
  • Try glue-board-style spider traps. They’re non-toxic and affordable. Place them along the walls and in the corners. 
  • Consider spider sprays. Apply them along baseboards, in corners, and under the furniture.
  • Try natural spider repellent. It’s good for outdoor and/or indoor use but often requires repeated applications. 
  • Call a pest control company. They can help with prevention and control. 


There are 10,000 known species of ants! They’re attracted to food, making them a common household pest. To keep them from entering your house:
  • Seal entry points. Caulk/seal all cracks and/or exposed crevices.
  • Take care of dirty dishes quickly. 
  • Clean with a vinegar solution: Mop floors and clean counters with equal parts vinegar and water as ants don’t like the smell.
  • Sweep/vacuum frequently: Remove crumbs and mop up spills every day.
  • Cover/store food: Keep food in cabinets or air-tight containers. Keep vegetables and fruit in the fridge.
  • Attend to pet food: Put pet food and water away at night.
  • Avoid standing water: Fix leaky pipes and faucets, preventing standing water.
  • Take out the garbage frequently and use an air-tight garbage can.
  • Seal cracks and/or crevices: Caulk cracks and/or crevices in doors and windows. Fill a syringe with a vinegar solution, injecting it into hiding places.
  • Utilize natural deterrents: Line entry points with things ants hate (salt, lemon juice, baby powder, vinegar, bay leaves, chalk, cinnamon, peppermint oil). 
  • Create a landscape buffer: Leave three feet between your home and all vegetation as ants use plants as bridges into your home, Maintain your lawn and clean up debris.
  • Place coffee grounds on colonies: Fresh coffee grounds cause ants to lose track of scent trails so spread them where ants congregate. Reapply at least once a year.
If ants enter your home, they must be dealt with swiftly and thoroughly as they reproduce rapidly, quickly taking over a space. If you have an infestation, call a pro as they have the knowledge and experience to help you with your problem. 


There are 116 types of beetles in Alberta. Some live in wooden structures while others eat silk,  leather, wool, fur, hair, bone, feathers, glue, linen, book bindings, cotton, horns, and dead insects. Some types infest cake mixes, cereals, spices, powdered milk, flour, and pet food. To avoid infestation in your home:
  • Spray wood varnish on wooden structures (seals holes keeping insects and eggs out),
  • Keep your home clean, taking particular care with hard-to-reach areas. 
  • Seal cracks and/or crevices in the foundation.
  • Repair damaged door/window screens.
  • Check siding, chimneys, and utility pipes.
  • Trim outdoor vegetation that is close to the exterior walls.
  • Brush susceptible clothing once a month.
  • Use repellents (come in small blocks or pouches).
If an infestation occurs, call a pro. They can help with prevention and control


Cockroaches have been around for approximately 359 million years! They wiggle through small openings and tiny gaps (as small as 1/16th of an inch). They come in with groceries and firewood and crawl in through drains and/or pipes. They prefer to reside in basements, greenhouses, bathrooms, kitchens, under sinks, in drains, and rooms containing sewer pipes/plumbing. Once established in your home, they secrete pheromones that signal more cockroaches to the area. To avoid infestation:
  • Keep counters and floors clean.
  • Keep your home free of food scraps.
  • Store food in sealed containers.
  • Keep cupboards dry.
  • Seal crevices/openings/gaps in walls and floors.
  • Fix leaky faucets and plumbing. 
  • Use a dehumidifier to reduce moisture levels.
  • Take the garbage out frequently and wash the garbage can.
  • Wash containers/bottles before putting them in the recycling.
  • Frequently take out the recycling.
If you have an infestation, contact a pest control company. They have strategies to control the spread and guarantee to remove the infestation.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs love frequent travelers! They latch onto luggage, purses, clothing, and people and enter your home after a trip. To avoid inviting them in:
  • Check sheets/mattresses in hotels for bed bugs and/or blood spots. 
  • When returning from a trip, clean luggage and clothes thoroughly, preferably in the garage. 
  • Follow the tips found on the Public Health Agency of Canada website.
  • Get rid of clutter.
  • Vacuum frequently, including mattresses and under and behind beds.
  • Check items you bring into your home (used books, furniture, garage sale items, refurbished items, antique store furniture, etc.).
  • Check new mattresses before they enter your home. Insist that a new mattress be sealed before delivery.
  • Check items before you put them in your car/truck/van. 
  • Check your car/truck after helping someone move.
  • Regularly check your home
If you inadvertently introduce bed bugs into your home:
  • Bedbugs die at 50°C. Steam all infested mattresses, upholstery, and/or plush items. Move the steamer slowly to maximize effects. 
  • Avoid excess moisture.
  • Put small items in the freezer for a prolonged period (4 days). 
  • Place non-washable and dry-clean-only items in the dryer for 30 minutes on the hottest setting. 
  • Wash bedding, mattress pads, bed skirts, curtains, infested clothes in hot water, and dry on the hottest setting. 
  • Store clean items in sealed heavy-duty plastic bags or plastic storage bins with secure lids.
  • Throw out items that can’t be washed, steam-cleaned, or heated.
  • Vacuum daily.
  • Consider contacting a pest control company. 
Don’t let pests/bugs disrupt Valentine’s Day, causing you and your loved one distress. Instead, let pest control experts ensure your home is clean and safe.  Have a bug/pest problem in your home? One Man and a Ladybug can help. Dealing with pests is our specialty. Contact us today!