Home / Blog / Stink, Stank, Stunk. The Annual Invasion of the Stink Bugs.

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If there’s one indication you can count on that fall is here, it’s the hordes of Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs that begin to invade homes and businesses alike. They are an invasive species that is native to East Asia, first introduced to North America in the late 1990’s. If you’ve ever wondered why they choose to invade your home this time of year, read on to find out! 

Why do they come inside?

Changes in the weather and shorter daylight hours trigger the stink bugs natural response to seek shelter for winter. Their shelter of choice? Your warm and cozy home. Like many insects, stink bugs are looking for a place to overwinter until the warm spring weather returns. 

When inside, you may notice them crawling along slowly, or clumsily flying across the room. They enter a state of hibernation in order to preserve energy throughout the winter, but they still move around to seek warmth. This causes their movements to be uncoordinated and awkward at best. Thankfully, they won’t bite, eat or reproduce while staying in your home, but the bad news is that if you see a few, there are likely many more hiding nearby!

How can I get them out?

Because they are continuously seeking the warmest areas, you will often find stink bugs crawling at the tops of walls or on drapes towards the ceilings. Heat rises within the room and that means so do these bugs! Here are a few tips for handling these little invaders when you spot them crawling in your home or business. 

Soap & Water – A quick and easy DIY for managing stink bugs is to fill a large jar with water and several drops of dish soap. Hold the jar directly under any stink bugs that you see, and they will instinctively drop directly into the jar. The soap breaks the surface tension of the water, making it so they get trapped in the jar and cannot escape.  

Another method that doesn’t require getting as up close and personal with the little buggers is to fill a wide shallow pan with your soap and water mixture, place a small light above the water and leave it overnight. The stink bugs will be attracted to the light and will end up falling into the pan, trapped in the soapy water just as they would be in the smaller jar. 

DIY Glue Trap – You can use tape, lint rollers or other adhesive materials to create your own glue trap at home. Attach to a broom or mop to create a long-handled trap for capturing bugs in hard to reach places. Dispose of the sticky pads in a sealed bag or outdoor trash can to eliminate the risk of them making back into your home. 

Vacuum – Use caution when using the vacuum to eliminate stink bugs, as they have been known to crawl back out! Make sure to empty it into a seal bag after each use. Some homeowners will purchase a small shop vac to use specifically for this purpose. 

When inside, you may notice them crawling along slowly, or clumsily flying across the room. They enter a state of hibernation in order to preserve energy throughout the winter, but they still move around to seek warmth. This causes their movements to be uncoordinated and awkward at best. Thankfully, they won’t bite, eat or reproduce while staying in your home, but the bad news is that if you see a few, there are likely many more hiding nearby!

The best way to keep stink bugs out is by using prevention methods prior to an infestation. In late summer, check your doors and windows for cracks and gaps and seal off any openings with caulk. Also take a walk around the outside of your home and inspect any other openings such as utility connections, chimneys, soffits and siding to close any additional openings. The less accessible your home is to these bugs, the less likely you will get an infestation! 

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