Proactive Pest Management | Man Made Harborages

Management of Pest Insects

in and Around the Home

Proactive Pest Management  |  Man Made Harborages

Figure 4. Man-made harborage sites where pests can be found outdoors include (A) the area under patio stones, (B) decorative rock piles and stones in gardens, (C) trash piles, and (D) in walls containing various voids (smokybrown cockroaches).

Man-made harborages include, for example, the areas underneath boards,patio stones, potted plants, garden statues, decorative rock piles, garden barriers, and other flat items lying on the ground. Keeping such garden decorations away from the foundation and exterior doors will reduce the potential for pests to harbor near the home and thus their chance of entering. Man-made harborages also include trash and garbage piles, firewood, the interior of hollow retaining walls, and the areas in and between crosstie or landscape timbers used around flower beds (Figure 4).
The structure itself can be viewed as a nearly endless series of man-made voids, behind cracks and crevices, that can serve as harborage for pests. Any crack or crevice in a structure that leads to a void will invite certain insect pests to harbor in that space, especially if food and water are available or the space enhances survival and growth. Common harborage sites within a structure include large areas such as crawlspaces (especially those without a vapor barrier and/or proper ventilation), attics (especially those with leakyroofs), and a wide variety of wall voids (the space defined by the interior and exterior siding on wall studs) (Figure 5).

Figure 5. The structure itself is comprised of an almost endless series of voids andother potential harborage sites, such as (A) crawlspaces, and (B) the attic area behind fascia boards, where smoky brown cockroaches were living.

There also are numerous small voids, such as the space between the dishwasher and kitchen cabinets,the space behind baseboards, the area between built-in cabinets and the wall, inside appliances and furniture, or gaps on the exterior cladding (boards, siding, brick veneer weep holes). Structural harborages can be made unusable by sealing cracks, crevices and other entryways. Inside homes clutter also provides harborage, and sometimes food, for pests. Clutter can be defined as persistent piles of clothing, books, paper bags, boxes, papers and newspapers, recyclables, etc. (Figure 6).


Proactive Pest Management
Man Made Harborages
Exterior Vegetation

Other Practices


Food, Shelter, Man Made Harborages, Exterior Vegetation, Water
Other Proactive Pest Management Practices

Crickets (Order Orthoptera)
Cockroaches (Order Blattaria)
Termites (Order Isoptera)
True Bugs (Order Hemiptera)
Beetles (Order Coleoptera)
Moths (Order Lepidoptera)
Flies (Order Diptera)
Ants, Bees, and Wasps (Order Hymenoptera)
Minor Orders of Insects – Occasional Pests
Non-Insectan Arthropods


University of Georgia publication Management of Pest Insects in and Around the Home

About this Publication

This article is part of the publication, “Management of
Pest Insects in and Around the Home” is a guide to
quick identification of 75 pests, including more than
120 color photos.



Daniel R. Suiter
Brian T. Forschler
Lisa M. Ames
E. Richard Hoebeke