There are over 4,700 species of stink bugs in the world, and about 250 of them are in the United States and Canada. Stink bugs are overwintering pests, meaning they hibernate in order to survive cold winter temperatures.
Stink Bug Identification
Stink bugs are aptly named after their tendency to secrete a foul-smelling odor from the pores of their thorax when disturbed. For this reason, you should never crush a stink bug. The best DIY method is to vacuum them as they appear.
Common stink bug species include:
Brown marmorated stink bug
Brown marmorated stink bugs come in various shades of brown on both their tops and undersides and often include gray, off-white, black, copper, and bluish markings. They measure approximately 1.7 cm in length and are almost as equally wide.
Green stink bug
As its name suggests, green stink bugs are typically bright green with yellow, orange, or reddish edges. These stink bugs typically measure about 13-18 mm long.
Rice stink bug
Rice stink bugs are typically straw-colored with a yellow triangle on the shield center and pointed edges on the shield’s apex. These stink bugs measure between 9.5 – 13 mm long.
Giant stron-nosed stink bug
Giant stron-nosed stink bugs are brown in color, with dark bands on the legs and margins of the abdomen. Adult males measure 16-21 mm long and females are about 18-25 mm in length.
Twice-stabbed stink bug
Twice-stabbed stink bugs are black in color, with red markings across their backs. They measure 4-7 mm in length.
Stink Bug Eating Habits
Most stink bugs are plant feeders and will feed on weeds and grasses. As they mature, they begin to migrate into fields and residential landscapes, and are resistant to many pesticides. Stink bugs are particularly a threat to home gardens and agricultural crops, and will often feed on fruits and vegetables.
Stink Bug Detection
Stink bugs are often detected in the fall, before they begin their overwintering process. They will generally appear on the sunny side of homes, warming themselves, or in gardens, where they will destroy crops.
Stink Bug Control
Our overwintering program is specifically designed to reduce overwintering populations and activity. Our initial services will begin in early fall, generally in the months of September and October. At this point, we’ll conduct a complete inspection and treat any and all areas where stink bugs have entered the structure and congregated. We will then arrange a follow-up inspection in the spring where a technician will re-inspect the home and vacuum any visible stink bugs that may have emerged.
In the meantime, the best way to keep stink bugs from hibernating in your home is to seal all entry points from the interior. It is more difficult to seal exterior areas, but we offer a service to seal exteriors for your convenience and peace of mind.