Fall and winter are the seasons for brown marmorated stink bugs. They decimate crops, invade homes, and smell terrible, but few people know anything about them. We are aiming to change that by giving you the top 5 things you should know about these pests.
- Stink bugs are an invasive species.
Brown marmorated stink bugs are native to China, Japan, and Korea. They were accidentally introduced to the United States in 1998. Although they are not native, the climate in the U.S. is ideal for stink bugs, so they have spread quickly and caused widespread destruction. In the short time they have been here, they have already become a priority of the Department of Agriculture.
- Stink bugs are mostly an agricultural pest.
Stink bugs have caused widespread damage to soybean crops in Japan, and they have begun to do the same here. They damage not only soybeans, but peaches, apples, green beans, cherries, and pears. Stink bugs are sucking insects that use their proboscis to pierce plants in order to feed. This can create dimpled or necrotic areas, seed loss, and plant death.
- They can also be a household pest.
During the Fall, stink bugs enter houses and other structures, sometimes in the thousands. Once in a home, they will go into a state of hibernation to wait out the winter. Sometimes a warm snap during the winter will be enough to trick the bugs into activity. If this happens, they will fly around clumsily. This is often startling to unsuspecting homeowners.
- Stink bugs… stink!
It might seem obvious that these bugs smell bad, but did you know that stink bugs have an odor that many compare to coriander? They emit this odor through holes in their abdomens as a defense mechanism that is meant to protect them from predators like birds and lizards. Once inside your home, stink bugs are not only annoying, but their smell can be downright disturbing for the home’s occupants.
- You CAN prevent stink bugs in your home.
Since stink bugs enter homes through window and door frames, chimneys, and other openings, the very best method of prevention is sealing the exterior of your home. Like other insects, stink bugs are attracted to light, so turning off your outdoor lights or replacing the bulbs with colors less likely to attract them (yellow, orange, and pink) is another good solution if you are seeing heavy stink bug populations around your home. If you discover a stink bug infestation in your home, call a licensed pest control company to help you properly take care of the problem.
Midwest Pest Control is your go-to source for all of your pest control needs. We are a family owned and operated company that prides itself on excellent customer care. With a 100% satisfaction guarantee, you have nothing to lose but the pests. Give us a call today.
*Photo By Yerpo (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons