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Do You Have Stink Bugs

December 2nd, 2010 · No Comments

We have a new Home Invader in East TN; The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug. This insect has just recently shown up in Tennessee and there is a lot of concern about it.The brown marmorated stink bug is an invasive species of stink bug native to China, Korea and Japan. The first bugs identified were in Allentown, PA in 2001, they were thought to be brought in to the US in shipping containers.

The stink bugs are strong fliers and are being transported through the eastern US by hitching rides in cargo shipments. They are becoming an established species in TN. Adult bugs are about the same size as our native stink bugs but are dark mottled brown. The last 2 antennal segments have distinctive light and dark bands and the exposed edges of the abdomen have the dark to light banding.

In autumn, the adult stink bugs are gathering and coming into homes, sheds and other structures looking for a warm place to spend the winter. They are very much like the lady bug problems we have been having the past few years. Many people find this to be a nuisance because the bug gives off a characteristic odor when they’re crushed or disturbed; this odor can linger for days and some people say they can even smell it for weeks.

The adults begin moving to their overwintering locations in early-mid September and continue until the first frost. During the winter, they do not reproduce and are very inactive. They typically do not feed during the winter and if they do it will be minimal. They are plant feeders and will not bite people or pets.

To control Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, the best method is to prevent them from entering.Placement of screens over windows, doors and vents, removal of window airconditioners and caulking cracks in windows and doorframes will deter the adults from entering. Removal of window air conditioners is important, as numerous BMSB will enter this way. If small numbers occur indoors, they can be removed either by hand or by using a shop-vacuum.

If large numbers are observed or have been observed in previous years, you may wish to contact your local pest control company who can do a perimeter pesticide spray. This must be done at the appropriate time (when the insects first appear) or control may be difficult to achieve.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs bite?
No. The brown marmorated stink bug does not have the capability to sting or bite. Their only means of defense is their characteristic “stink”.

Why does the brown marmorated stink bug gather in large quantities?
When a brown marmorated stink bug finds a site for overwintering it releases a chemical called an aggregation pheromone. The aggregation pheromone is a scent that attracts other brown marmorated stink bugs to the area. The aggregation pheromone is not the same chemical that causes them to stink.

Will killing the brown marmorated stink bugs cause more to come?
No. While this is true for some types of insects it does not occur with the brown marmorated stink bug.

If the brown marmorated stink bug doesn’t harm people or homes, why are they such a big problem?
Aside from being a nuisance to homeowners and tenants of apartments, townhouses, condominiums and office buildings the potential exists for the brown marmorated stink bug to become a significant agricultural pest.

Preston Sandlin and Home Inspection Carolina have providing thorough quality home inspections in the Charlotte NC area for over 15 years.  Preston has a masters’ degree in Education and has taught Home Inspection classes for years.  He also is a certified infrared thermographer.  Home Inspection Carolina has  been on TV many times and has a Charlotte Home Inspector radio show .  So you are in need of a home inspection in Charlotte NC, Gastonia NC, Waddington NC, Mooresville NC, Fort Mill SC or Rock Hill SC call Home Inspection Carolina (704) 542-6575.


Preston Sandlin

Home Inspection Carolina

Ask the Charlotte Inspector

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