MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – One of the few downsides to our mild winter is that more of those pesky bugs survived.

The freezing temps usually work to kill a lot of the bugs. But without the freeze last winter, they are now making themselves known, and in high numbers.

Box elder bugs seem to be the most annoying of the survivors. Because of their small size, box elders manage to creep their way inside homes.

Mike Misk, manager at Rainbow Pest Experts, says warm temperatures and lots of rain have helped to grow the seeds on the trees.

“We’re really on track for a record year for insects this year,” said Misk. “There’s more seeds on trees, hence there’s more food, more for the insects to feed off of.”

Seeds fall from the silver maple trees, and once they come down and reach the ground, the bugs have a feast. And when night falls, the well-fed bugs make themselves at home – in our homes.

“When it gets cold at night, they find those cracks and crevices and just go right inside and hide,” he said.

Here are three tips that Misk has for homeowners:

1) Trim back the vegetation so it doesn’t touch your home.

2) Use sealant to seal around doors and windows.

3) Our expert says the old trick of mixing dish soap and water and putting it on the side of your house does help to keep bugs away for at least a few weeks.

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