25,000 insects in a Christmas tree – this is the result of a study by the University of Bergen in Norway. Besides ornaments and candles, mites and moths make themselves comfortable in the living room. We’ll tell you how to get rid of the unwelcome guests.
Up to 25,000 insects in your Christmas tree
The spruce, fir or pine is as much a part of Christmas as mashed potatoes, Santa Claus and pie. But the Christmas tree brings unwelcome guests into the living room: insects.
- Bark lice, mites, moths, small spiders but also ticks can hide in your Christmas tree. The university in Bergen, Norway found out that there are up to 25,000 animals in one tree.
- During the winter months the insects hibernate in the wild. As soon as you bring the animals into your warm living room, they feel the pleasant temperature and think it is spring. They wake up and become active.
- Inside the house, however, they do not find a suitable food supply – they die within a very short time. Except for some species of beetles, which feed on the bark and trunk of the tree.
- All in all, you have nothing to fear, the majority of the crawling animals are harmless – most of them are so small that you will not even notice them.
- However, you should be careful concerning ticks. After decorating the tree, check whether a tick has bitten your body. Small babies are best not to crawl under the tree.
How to avoid bringing the unpleasant little animals into the house
Even if the little bugs are harmless, just the feeling that small bark lice are crawling around somewhere next to mulled wine and fruitcake does not exactly make you feel happy. Don’t worry, with a few little tricks you can keep the insects out of your living space.
- Before you place the Christmas tree in the house, you should store it in the basement or garage. It is important that the temperature is above 47 °F. At this temperature the insects wake up, start looking for food and die after a short time. So if you put your tree in the cellar for a few days first, the living area remains safe.
- Shake the Christmas tree well before it ends up in the trunk of your car. Shaking it will cause most insects to fall out of the branches.
- Usually the dealer does this before the purchase. So you have nothing to worry about.