Sleigh What?! Pests In My Holiday Décor? Snow Way!

The National Pest Management Association is sharing advice to keep pests from ruining holiday cheer. 

FAIRFAX, VA (December 4, 2023) —It’s the most wonderful time of the year! As you prepare to decorate your homes for the holidays, there are threats to be mindful of this season. Pests are snow joke! In fact, 1 in 10 Americans (11%) are concerned about pest infestations in their home because of their holiday decorations (e.g., fresh-cut trees, wreaths, garlands, pinecones). As such, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is offering ways to deck the halls without inviting pests into the home.  

“This winter season, many pests are heading indoors to find shelter from the cooler temperatures. Spiders, mites, and other pests have been known to nest in live greenery like trees, wreaths and garlands, which often end up being used to decorate the home during the holidays,” said Dr. Jim Fredericks, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs for NPMA. “It is essential to employ proper pest prevention protocols as these natural holiday decorations can provide pests with direct access to your home.” 

The NPMA survey conducted online by The Harris Poll found that nearly 1 in 7 Americans (14%) have found pests like spiders, insects and rodents in their natural holiday decorations. Here are some tree-mendous tips from NPMA to spruce things up this holiday:  

  • Carefully inspect and shake all greenery and natural decorations outside before bringing them indoors, and routinely vacuum around the base of trees. Wreaths, trees and garlands could be hiding spiders, ticks or insect eggs. 

  • As you unpack boxes and bins of decorations, usually stored for extended periods of time in attics, basements or garages, check for signs of rodent droppings or gnaw marks as these containers can serve as ideal homes for insects and rodents. 

  • Be sure to store firewood on a raised structure at least 20 feet from the home and brush it off before bringing it indoors. Pests like termites, spiders and ants can get inside aboard logs. 

  • If you are known to leave out a plate of cookies for someone special or decorate gingerbread houses with sweets, be mindful of where you store these treats as it might be a holiday feast for ants and cockroaches.  

  • To wrap up the season, use hard plastic containers with airtight lids rather than cardboard boxes to keep pests out. If you encounter pest activity in your home this season, there’s no need to Claus a scene. Contact a licensed pest control professional for appropriate treatment.   

Don’t make your home a nice place for these naughty creatures. Head to for more information on keeping a pest-free home. 


Survey Methodology 

 This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of the National Pest Management Association from September 22-26, 2023, among 2,087 U.S. adults ages 18+. The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the sample data is accurate to within +/- 2.7 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. For complete survey methodology, please contact 


About the National Pest Management Association

The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 5,500 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry’s commitment to the protection of public health, food and property from the diseases and dangers of pests. For more information, visit or follow @PestWorld on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, TikTok and YouTube.