Whether you have a small garden or a massive farm, brown marmorated stink bugs can become a problem. These bugs, that were originally soybean and fruit crop pests in Japan, deface fruit here in the United States when they pierce the skin with their mouthparts. This damage also allows other bugs to infest the fruit, making it unsellable and unfit for human consumption.
The brown marmorated stink bug attacks a wide variety of crops. They will eat most fruits, but prefer pears, apples, peaches, nectarines, raspberries, blueberries, and grapes. They can also be found eating snap peas, lima beans, sweet corn, tomatoes, field corn, soybeans, cucumbers, bush beans, and peppers. But their diet isn't limited to these.
Stink bugs are also known to eat seeds and seed pods of ornamental trees and shrubs. This can make them a major pest to residential landscapes. And, when they feed, they can affect plant health because they spread plant disease from one plant to the next.
The primary way stinks bugs make themselves a pest to residential homes is in the way that they congregate on the warm, sunny side of homes and eventually find their way inside when temperatures drop. While stink bugs don't reproduce inside homes, preferring to wait until spring to lay eggs on outside plants, they can be a serious pain for homeowners when they crawl around in curtains and congregate on light fixtures.
The effective solution for stink bugs is an application of EPA-approved insecticides to targeted areas. Insecticides are used by farms and orchards to protect crops and control these bugs. And, home and business owners have insecticides applied to exterior walls to keep these pests from overwintering. All insecticides should be applied by a licensed professional. Inappropriate use of insecticides can be a danger to humans and pets.
If you are concerned about getting stink bugs in your home, here are a few things to remember:
Your door and window screens are the first line of defense against overwintering pests.
Make sure all of your door sweeps and weather strippings are in good working order.
When stink bugs find an entry point, they release a pheromone scent. It is important to vacuum up any stink bugs you see crawling around on your exterior walls, balcony, deck, or patio.
These bugs can get in through vents. Make sure you have screens covering them.
They can get in through chimneys, so consider covering your chimney with a cap.
Do a close examination of your exterior walls and use a caulking gun to fill in any gaps or holes.
Sealing up exterior walls from the invasion of stink bugs is very difficult. Sometimes it is only possible to exclude these bugs with the added protection of an insecticide application.
If you live in our Tennessee service area, let Russell's Pest Control protect your home from the invasion of stink bugs. We offer safe and effective management for these and other invasive pests.