Know Your Pest! Stink Bugs


Oct 24, 2017

Know Your Pest! Stink bugs

Autumn is a popular season among many in Northern Virginia: the cool weather is welcome after another hot, sticky summer. Our rolling hills and lush forests make getting stuck in traffic on 66 or 95 a little more pleasant. The Redskins still have a chance to make the playoffs. It’s a great time of year!
 
These seasonal pleasures, however, enter our lives at the same time that an unwanted guest arrives in the Mid-Atlantic: the stink bug.
 
You’ve probably heard about stink bugs. Stink bugs are taking over homes across Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. While stink bugs are a dangerous problem for farmers — stink bugs love to chow down on fruits and vegetables — they probably won’t pose a serious threat to your property or your health. 
 
Stink bugs can still be quite a nuisance to Northern Virginia homeowners, however — and we’ll give you one guess why! 
 
Got stink bugs? Don’t worry. Our Fairfax pest control experts have dealt with these stinky intruders in the past — and we have all the info you need to avoid, or end, your own personal stink bug invasion. 

 

What are stink bugs?

Stink bugs are an invasive species that rolled into the United States from Asia in the mid-1990s. According to North Dakota State University, there are 4,700 species of stink bugs in the world, with about 250 in the U.S. and Canada. 
 
Stink bugs are usually three-fourths-of-an inch long, five-sided and have stripping along their antennae and abdomen.
 
The Northern Virginia stink bug you’re probably familiar with is the brown marmorated stink bug (or Halyomorpha halys). This critter gets the first part of its name from the brown marling pattern on its back. It gets the second part because it releases a foul odor when it feels threatened by predators. Even dead stink bugs can stink up your home.

 

How do you know if you have stink bugs?

In order to stay alive in the winter months, stink bugs usually enter homes in late summer or early fall through cracks and holes in your home. Stink bugs tend to remain hidden throughout the winter and then become active again in the spring. 
 
As stink bugs try to leave your home to get back outside in the warmer months, they’ll start to make their way into your main living space. That’s why you may find the bugs in a cluster on the walls or windows. If you’re not sure if you’re dealing with stink bugs, give your local pest control companies a call.
 
Stink bugs don’t bite or spread disease. They do, however, stink.
 

How to keep stink bugs out of your home

The best method for stink bug control is prevention. Here’s what you need to keep in mind for Fairfax pest control:
 
  • Seal home cracks and openings: Before stink bug season is upon you, spend some time inspecting the outside of your home for easy access points (such as chimneys, utility pipes other openings).
  • Ventilate spaces: A great way to eliminate harborage points is by properly ventilating basements, crawl spaces, attics and garages. You should also consider using a dehumidifier in these areas and installing screens to keep critters out.
  • Repair missing or torn screens: Since these pests can get through ever the smallest of openings, it’s a smart idea to repair or replace your weather-torn screens on windows and doors. 
  • Fix door and window cracks: Use a good quality silicone or silicone-latex caulk. You can also seal gaps under exterior doors with weather stripping. Not sure how to do this? The experts at the trusted pest control companies can lend you a hand.
 

How to get rid of stink bugs

Luckily, stink bugs do not truly infest homes as they do not feed, mate or lay eggs indoors. If they have made their way inside your home, though, you’ll find that they’re incredibly hard to control. That’s because they tend to stay tucked away in those little, inaccessible areas until they’re ready to come out.
 
The easiest way to remove them from your living space is by using a vacuum cleaner to suck them up -- although you may want to think twice before doing so. You may discover that the smell will linger in the vacuum long after it’s dead, so don’t forget to empty your vacuum bag right away. 
 
If you do find yourself with a stink bug infestation, it’s best to call your local pest control company to develop and implement a plan that’s right for your home. 
 

Stink bugs don’t make good pets. 

Nobody wants to live with stink bugs! If you suspect the brown marmorated stink bug has infested your home, get the most effective Fairfax pest control from the five-star technicians at CroppMetcalfe. Call 1-877-740-6657 or schedule service online now.