Warming up with a wood-burning fire this winter could bring some unwanted guests. Pests would be a better word, as in insects.
“Firewood is sometimes infested with wood-boring insects,” Laurie Stepanek with the Nebraska Forest Service tells Nebraska Radio Network.
Keeping firewood inside will warm up the dormant bugs.
“After several weeks indoors, those insects may actually complete their development and emerge from the wood,” she explains. “It can be alarming to people to see insects buzzing around inside their house in the middle of winter.”
It is unlikely you would bring in termites, Stepanek says, since they nest underground and are not active in the winter.
“Most of the time, these insects are harmless,” she says. “A lot of the insects actually resemble wasps. They look like wasps. They kind of buzz around when they fly, but that’s just an adaptive mechanism for them.”
That would be a Redheaded ash borer. Another possibility is the Banded ash borer.
“We recommend keeping the wood outdoors, storing it outdoors, so that the colder temperatures will keep the insects that might be in that wood inactive,” Stepanek says. “Just bring in only the amount of wood that you’re going to burn.”
AUDIO: Mike Loizzo reports [:39]