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According to a survey study that interviewed residents about the arthropods found within their homes, numerous species from around 72 arthropod families may invade homes. The greatest number of arthropods found within homes were beetles, flies, mosquitoes, ants, wasps, and several species of true bugs, which include stink bugs, boxelder bugs, leaf-footed bugs, harlequin bugs and western conifer seed bugs. Asian lady beetles, ants, boxelder bugs and millipedes topped the list as the most frequently mentioned species that established nuisance infestations within homes. Infestations of stink bugs, Asian lady beetles and western conifer seed bugs were noted as increasing dramatically within northeastern homes. Nearly all of the most commonly encountered bugs within homes are also known to be abundant in residential yards, leading researchers to theorize that certain landscaping practices and common lawn features likely contributed significantly to most insect infestations that occur in the northeast.

Many insect pest infestations that occur within homes in the northeast could likely be prevented by practicing particular landscaping duties or by altering common landscaping practices. For example, an overabundance of vegetation along the foundation of homes serves to attract nuisance insect pests indoors. Altering the types of host plant species around homes may also reduce indoor nuisance insect infestations. Maintaining plants that attract predators of common indoor pests will make indoor infestations much less likely to occur. Outdoor lights, mulch, wood piles and tree stumps may also lure common nuisance insect pests species into houses. Many beetle species, grasshoppers, owlet moths and Asian roaches gravitate to artificial light sources on porches and front stoops where they can easily access indoor areas through foundation cracks. Springtails, millipedes, centipedes, termites, weaver spiders and earwigs often infest homes where mulch covers the ground near foundations. Mulch provides many arthropod pests with shelter, humidity and food sources that these pests require in order to thrive.

Do you believe that features of your lawn landscape may lure pests onto your property?