Common Winter Pests in New York

Winter is underway and you may be wondering where some of the most common household pests New Yorkers see inside go this time of year. It’s a common misconception that pests totally “die off” during the colder months; in actuality, many pests are alive and well, escaping the cold altogether by finding sneaky hiding places indoors.

Here are a few common winter pests New York homeowners see in their homes this time of year.


Mice are one common pest that homeowners deal with in the winter. Unlike rats, mice prefer living indoors in walls and attics, often causing damage to insulation, drywall, wiring and other parts of the home. They are usually active at night, which can make them difficult to detect until they start chewing on wires or become more active during daylight hours. Mice can spread diseases when they burrow into food products or scratch through walls looking for food sources such as pet food or crumbs from human snacks.

So, if you have noticed gnaw marks on your electrical wires or tiny droppings scattered around your home, you may have an infestation of mice on your hands. Fortunately, there are certain steps you can take to prevent this from happening in the first place, such as sealing any cracks on the exterior of your home along the foundation, windows, and doors with steel wool.


Rats are another occasional winter visitor. These pests like to live by food sources, so pantries and kitchens are common places to find them. Their droppings can spread diseases and contaminate food. Rats can also cause damage to homes by gnawing through insulation, wires and pipes in order to get at the tasty items inside.

It is important to check your basement and attic for rats, as these areas provide the perfect conditions and materials for nesting. Luckily, in addition to keeping mice out, you can also prevent rat infestations by filling any gaps on the exterior of your home with caulk. 


Raccoons often enter homes in search of a warm space or food. They may also nest in chimneys and attics, damaging insulation and causing fires. That is why it is so crucial to have a chimney cap installed!

Raccoons are opportunistic feeders, so they will eat anything they can find: pet food left outside, garbage that may have spilled out of your trash cans, insects, bird eggs and baby birds (which can be killed by adults who protect their young), small rodents such as rabbits or gophers, cat food left outdoors or even pet cats or dogs if they can catch them! In addition to the risks associated with raccoon feces (including roundworm parasites), these animals can do significant damage to homes while looking for food or nesting sites.


Squirrels are another common winter pest New York homeowners battle this time of year as these warm-blooded critters seek out a warm place to call home for the cooler months.

Squirrels are known to nest in attics, walls and ceilings. They may also take up residence behind loose siding or flooring. Squirrels can also enter homes through pet doors and other small openings. In addition to the attic, squirrels can live between floors, in walls and even under sinks.

If you have squirrels in your attic, they’re likely causing damage. They will chew through wires, which can cause fires and electrical fires. They can also create excessive noise that’s disruptive to people living in the home. If you hear something scratching around in your ceiling or walls, it’s possible that there are squirrels trying to get into the house by chewing through the wood and insulation.

Beat the Cold…And Winter Pests!

Do you suspect that the chill in the air is responsible for bringing pests into your home? If so, choose the professionals here at Knockout Pest Control to handle the situation. We can knock out your winter pests and keep them down for the count!

Call 1-800-244-PEST to schedule an estimate.

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