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Tips On How To Get Rid Of Stink Bugs
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Stink bugs, which are known by biologists as the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), are native to Asia, including China, Japan and Taiwan. Sometime during the late 1990's they were apparently accidentally introduced into the US. In all locations, they are an agricultural pest. Learning how to get rid of stink bugs is important for multiple reasons.

These little brown bugs are about one inch long, and get their common name from small glands that produce a smelly compound. They eat many kinds of fruits and vegetables, such as corn, apples, soybeans, and peaches. Their signature stink is usually only noticeable when the bug is squashed or otherwise damaged.

In the United States, they have no natural predators. Though they also do not reproduce as rapidly in the seasonal regions of the US where they are mostly found, the population is still exploding. The critters can have up to four generations a year in the warmer parts of China, but only one in mid-Atlantic region of the US where they are most common.

The good news about these critters is that they do not damage houses or other structures, and are harmless to human beings. They are not known to carry any diseases, so having them in the house is more annoying than dangerous. If you are sharing your home with these creatures, it is recommended that you relocate them outside rather than smashing them, as the smell can be quite potent.

The best management practices for keeping these creatures out of your home is to seal up openings where they might wander in. If this is not possible, certain insecticides containing a synthetic pyrethroid can be sprayed around openings in the home's exterior. These chemicals are toxic and should only be applied by licensed pest management providers. Unfortunately, sunlight breaks down these compounds, and their efficiency is thus limited to a number of days or weeks.

Once the insects have gained entry to the home, the best removal methods are manual. Using an insecticide indoors is generally less than effective, as the critters hide in cracks in the wall and other locations where an aerosol does not reach well. The dead insects left after using an insecticide can also attract other insects to feed on the carcasses, and often these are carpet beetles. Unlike BMSB,s carpet beetles are potentially damaging to your home and valuables.

The vacuum cleaner may be the best defense against indoor BMSB invaders. Though if the critters are sucked up alive, the vacuum will likely acquire their characteristic smell for a while, it eliminates some of the odor. Another method to get rid of stink bugs is to trap them in jars and either kill them or release them outdoors.

Despite being a serious problem for farmers, BMSMs are just an annoying nuisance for homeowners. The slow-moving critters are easy to catch, don't bite or sting, and aren't known to carry diseases. They are also harmless to share a home with, if a bit smelly when bothered. Methods to get rid of stink bugs are being experimented with in USDA labs, and might be unveiled within the next year or two.


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