How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs in Your Home
Many species of stink bugs live throughout the Unite States. Recently, a new type of the pest, the Marmorated stink bug, is making North America its home.
Step 1 - The Marmorated Stink Bug
The Marmorated stink bug most likely hitchhiked its way into the United States from China. It was first found in Allentown, Pennsylvania in 1998. Stink bugs enjoy hanging out in the garden eating almost any kind of fruit or vegetable which it pierces with a proboscis that protrudes from its mouth. In the fall, stink bugs start looking for a warm shelter. They begin to make their way into our homes in September through October. The insects are called stink bugs because they are equipped with glands that emit a noxious smell when they feel threatened.
Step 2 - Identifying the Marmorted Stink Bug
The uninvited Marmorted stink bug looks like a walking shield with its triangular shaped, brown body. Stink bugs are drawn to the outside of our homes because of the warmth on cool fall nights and lights that are left on at night. It is not uncommon to find a multitude of stink bugs attached to window screens and fluttering around porch lights.
Step 3 - The Life Cycle of Stink Bugs
Stink bugs have a mating season that spans from June until August. The female stink bug lays bunches of 20 to 30 eggs on the underside of leaves. Adult sink bugs can live several years and hibernate in the winter. They use our homes as a winter retreat not for reproducing. The bad news is that they leave a scent inviting other stink bugs to join them.
Step 4 - Stopping a Stink Bug Invasion
The best defense against a stink bug invasion is to prevent them from gaining access to your home. Check your home for any holes or cracks where they can enter. Pay special attention to areas around windows, doors, pipes, utility wires, chimneys, attics, basements and garages. Remove air conditioning units at the end of the summer to take away a favorite stink bug hangout. Maintain screens to make sure there are no rips and that they fit tightly. Call a professional exterminator to spray insecticide around the perimeter of your house; however, this is a temporary method due to it degrading quickly. It is not a good idea to release bug bombs or powders to get rid of stink bugs, because if the pests are killed in hard to reach places their decaying bodies can attract scavengers like the carpet beetle.
Step 5 - How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs in Your Home
Unfortunately, stink bugs are a big problem in the Mid-Atlantic States so you may find them in your home. Smacking a stink bug with your shoe is not a good idea, since it will release a foul smell that can linger for more than six months. When you discover a stink bug you want to remove it intact. The best thing to do is to scoop it up into a disposable cup and let it go outside. For a more persistent problem, use a vacuum cleaner with a bag to suck up the stink bugs. Discard them in an outside trash container.