Returning to your caravan after the winter break, what insects and pests will you find?

Our Managing Director, Karen Stacey, has her own caravan which she’s recently been to open up for the season. She counted 18 dead flies on the carpet and thought it might make an interesting article!

She wanted to know why flies seem to find their way into her caravan and if there’s any science behind it? So, in this piece, we thought we’d answer that question and also consider what other pests you might find! Managing Director, Karen Stacey outside of her caravan

Why so many dead flies?

Simply put, as temperatures cool, flies look for cracks and gaps they can use to stay out of the wind. This leads them to caravans or lodges as they enter via air-vents or any failed seams or seals. Being so tiny they don’t need much of a gap before they are inside. Either they prefer to stay indoors once there or they simply can’t find their way out again, this is why many perish over the winter months and are resting on the carpet waiting for you when you return!

Cluster Flies

a cluster fly

These are different and are so-called because they cluster together. They normally live in fields and are attracted to white surfaces because it attracts warmth and sunshine. If your caravan faces South and is getting warm in the sun, you’ll probably see them on the side wall. When the sun sets and the temperature drops, they draw together in a crevice to keep warm. The next day, as the sun comes up and the temperature rises, the flies may crawl out and fly away again.

You can kill them with a fly spray if you wish, then just brush, or hoover them up. Essential oils are also a deterrent and although they have a beautiful aroma, cluster flies don’t agree! Cinnamon, lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint, and lemongrass are particularly effective.

Rats and Mice


Caravans and holiday homes are attractive shelters for rats and mice over the winter. Damage caused by these pests can be dangerous and expensive to fix, such as cables and pipework being chewed through. Rodent droppings and urine can also be harmful to your health, so it is important to prevent them from coming back.

You will need to cover any holes with metal mesh. Metal is a must as rats and mice won’t be able to gnaw through it. Please also ensure that airflow in the caravan remains uninterrupted as they need to be ventilated.

Mothballs and tumble dryer sheets will also keep these pests away as the smell is a threat to them.

Another top tip, many people have bird feeders at their holiday homes and keep stocks of seeds etc in cupboards to feed the birds. Make sure you remove this when closing up for the winter, don’t leave it behind as rats consider suet logs and fat balls as a delicacy and like nothing better!

Compass is one of the few specialist caravan and lodge insurance providers to include vermin damage cover as standard.


a silverfish

Silverfish are small ‘fish-like’ bugs that live in damp environments and love to feed on the damp and humid interiors of static caravans and bathrooms, especially after winter.

It is best to remove these as soon as possible as Silverfish can live for up to eight years, and females can lay up to 100 eggs! *

One method of removing them is to use citrus and lavender essential oils in areas they are most attracted to. This is because they don’t like the smell – but this will also help freshen up your holiday home!

We also recommend getting a dehumidifier to help prevent dampness within your holiday home. This will in return stop the return of these bugs.


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