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What do you do about bugs/spiders/insects on your wood?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by NewtownPA, Oct 4, 2008.

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  1. NewtownPA

    NewtownPA New Member

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    When storing wood outside to "season" for months and months, there are all sorts of insects/spiders etc that call it "home". Last year I had spiders coming out of my small stack of wood inside the house. YUCK!

    So what do you do to minimize these critters?

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  2. rich81

    rich81 Member

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    burn them!! and when you put them in the stove and they come scurrying out you laugh at em
  3. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    A. Ignore them, squash them, toss 'em in the fire, call the cats. Heating with wood isn't tidy.

    B. Don't bring more than a couple days' supply inside the house at a time. Bugs will be logy or dormant in the winter cold. Why wake them up prematurely?

    I've not had a big problem with this at all. There's the occasional bug, but it's no big deal. They aren't designed to live through the winter even indoors, so what do I care if one runs out of the wood and into a corner once in a while?

    Not to be unsympathetic, but if you're going to heat with wood, you're going to have a bug or two run out of the wood once in a while. Best just to accept it as a fact of life!
  4. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    We live in the woods and so many dang bugs get in this place that I can't identify which ones came in with firewood.

    It was the snake sitting on a server in my office this summer that irked me.
  5. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Hah! What did you do about it?

    I suspect NewtownPA lives in a suburb in a nice, clean new house, and he/she has a bit of country coming in with the wood supply. It can be unnerving.

    I live in the country, and bugs galore, mice, bats, etc., are only a fact of life. When my city/suburban friends and relations come to visit, some of them have a really hard time. (They also insist on pulling the curtains on the bathroom and bedroom windows. City-trained reflexes can be really hard for some folks to break.)
  6. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    I went Biblical on it and smote its head before it could smite my heal. Yeah people can't believe that we have lived out here 26 years and don't have drapes. It started out with us just trying to figure out which ones we wanted and after a while we realized we didn't want or need them. Eventually I put those cutesy tiny panel blinds on most of the windows but they are only used when we have overnight company. In case somebody can see 1000 feet through heavy woods up through two story bedroom windows.
  7. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Smote it right on top of the server? I'd like to have seen that!

    Living in the north, I do have thermal curtains for wintertime, but I'm tempted to take them down next time folks come to visit. It'd be worth the hassle to make them use the bathroom while looking out over the fields. Takes a while for folks to get that there's no idle foot traffic when houses are half a mile or more apart on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere, and the farmer on the other side of the valley has better things to do than spend the day peering through a telescope at my bathroom window just in case.
  8. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

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    They either vacate my splits or their souls vacate their bodies when they get tossed into the firebox. I have an indoor rack in my garage that can store about a week's supply that I refill from the outdoor racks. At this time of year there are plenty of spiders & small insects crawling in the wood, but by the time we have a few killer frosts under our belt, most of them have died or moved somewhere else. Had a 4' long milk snake near my piles the other week, but snakes will definitely be hibernating underground by the time full blown burning season starts.
  9. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Zip. Rick
  10. Rick

    Rick Member

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    I don't mind any bugs that come in, they are easy enough to dispatch. A couple of years back I had a mouse make a cozy home in a hollowed out piece of wood. That was a bit unnerving, I had to take care of it before my wife saw it. Luckily my dog got it before it could get away.
  11. CowboyAndy

    CowboyAndy New Member

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    I agree that there isn't much to be done about them. This being our first year, I thought about letting off a few bombs once I got it all moved inside, but quickly realized that the bugs here are practicly immune to them, coupled with the fact that there are so many to begin with. We get flies like crazy because we have a sheep field 100' from the house, and the flies attract spiders, and so on.

    My brother and sister in law are hard core city folk, and come to visit maybe once a year. My SIL has something against bats, mice, moles, coons, skunks, spiders, flies and other bugs. She doesn't even allow shoes IN THE HOUSE, PERIOD. When she comes to our house, she wears shoes 24/7 because she "doesn't know whats on the floor".

    Hey, its all part of country life. I'll be laughing all winter while they are paying their gas bill.
  12. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I sic the shih tzus on them. They will rue the day they darkened mydoorstep.

    (I mean- they're bugs, my response is in proportion).

    [​IMG]
  13. caber

    caber New Member

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    Yup - it freaks out our families out that we have no curtains on the bedroom or bathroom windows. Only window coverings are for the south facing windows in the summer. Of course they also don't see the benefits of letting sheep mow your yard either.

    Worst thing I have found in the wood pile are big black ants. The seem to hibernate inside a split when it's really cold and when they warm up inside the house, the start moving - very very slowly of course. Then I either knock them out outside or pop them in the fire. Other than that, there are not a lot of bugs in the woodpile. Spiders get most of them, I suppose.

    You could stack a days worth of wood just outside the door and bring it in as you need it. That will keep the bugs and mess down. I have the main wood pile, then a stack on the deck of about 4 days worth. I'll bring in an armload in the morning after I have a fire going so that my wife doesn't have to go out to get it. Every couple of days, I move more wood up to the small stack.
  14. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    They rarely survive.
    It's not like they are palmetto bugs.
  15. ksting

    ksting New Member

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    They just add additional BTU's!
  16. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, what you really don't want is a piece of wood with a big nest of their eggs sitting around indoors until spring.
  17. sweetheat

    sweetheat Member

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    they seem to know in warmer weather when to jump off before being brought into the house. from the stack to the cart is a jolting ride, most depart. if I see a big friendly spider I'll catch it and throw it back outside. if it makes it in the cats usually get it. I always see snake skins in the wood pile.
  18. bayshorecs

    bayshorecs New Member

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    hmm....

    Tell the wife there "might" be snakes in the wood pile and have her NEVER get any wood.

    OR

    Not tell her and get a couple weeks/months of help hauling the wood in to feed the stove.

    hmm....
  19. boostnut

    boostnut Member

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    Tough decision isn't it Bayshorecs?? Where are you in central IL?
  20. Ron Lloyd

    Ron Lloyd New Member

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    I wish I could train my black snakes to stay outside in the woodpiles. I rarely see them in the living quarters but I often find their shed skins in the attic and in the dirt cellars. When I show these skins (many of them in excess of 6 feet) to visitors they usually scan the immediate area that they are standing in and then ask how I sleep at night. I sleep very well, thanks for asking, I reply. It works great for whisking away any visitors that have overstayed their welcome. I haven’t seen a mouse since shortly after finding that first snake skin about 8 years ago. I have come to the conclusion (not that I have any choice) that I would rather have those long slender critters, that I rarely see, and that don’t eat the same foods I eat than the little furry ones that used to scamper about. Saves on mouse traps too.

    One last thing, if you find yourself in a similar situation, do not poison the mice in an attempt to eliminate the food source. That big juicy black snake will inevitably eat a poisoned mouse and then crawl off to an inaccessible location to die. You wouldn’t think that poison would be strong enough to kill them both but it is. The stink will last for what seems an eternity. It is easier to get used to knowing they are slithering about than it is to get used to that smell. Don’t ask me how I know this.

    Ron
  21. bayshorecs

    bayshorecs New Member

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    25min west of Peoria. Elmwood.
  22. RedRanger

    RedRanger New Member

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    Hmmm-snakes in the woodpile, and/or snakes in the house, and I would quickly cease to be a wood burner. And we don`t even have poisonus ones here on the island. :gulp:
  23. Ron Lloyd

    Ron Lloyd New Member

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    I’m sorry I may have left some with the impression that the black snakes in my house have something to do with bringing firewood into the house. That couldn’t be further from the truth. They will come into your house whether you burn wood or not. If you think they can not get into your house you may want to look at some of these pictures. If you have ever had a mouse in your house then you have a hole somewhere big enough for a black snake to get in. You may have had them in your house and didn’t even know it. The snake in these photos is roughly 6 and a half feet long and went through a hole that is less than ½ inch thick. It’s really not as bad as you might think having them around. In the olden days people used to intentionally release them in their houses to get rid of rodents. Best mouse trap ever.

    It may take more than one post to include all 6 photographs.

    Ron

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  24. Ron Lloyd

    Ron Lloyd New Member

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    Here are the last two. Oh, and in case your concerned for my wellbeing blake snakes are not poisonous.

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  25. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Oh
    My
    God.

    Sitting here with my jaw about down to my knees looking at your pix. What is it getting into? Looks like it's about to come into your living room, but I assume it's going through the wall or something?

    Snakes don't freak me out, and black snakes are both handsome and benign, but there's something distinctly unnerving about the idea of having something that big coming into one's house uninvited and hanging out in the basement.
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