Using Science to Enrich Beautiful Landscapes
Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs
Recently, over 25,000 stink bugs were recorded inside one home on the East Coast! The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, or Halyomorpha halys, has become more noticeable in the Great Lakes State since its first introduction back in 2010. Many are now beginning to take notice as the population has exploded in southern Michigan and before long it will reach the entire state.
The BMSB, a true bug belonging to the Pentatomidae kingdom, is a native to Southeast Asia. In September of 1998, BMSB was first recorded in Allentown, PA. Like most invasive or nonnative species, the BMSB was introduced to the East Coast states via agricultural imports. The insect has since spread to the Northeastern states and has now entered into Berrien County, Michigan back in 2010; the Southwest corner of the state. As of 2015, BMSB has been recorded in 42 states, and detected in 23 of the 68 counties of the State of Michigan.
While BMSB has often been found disturbing agricultural landscapes, most residents in Michigan will find them resting on the ornamental landscape, chewing on plant material — such as honeysuckle, butterfly bush, crabapple, viburnum and rose. BMSB tend to aggregate on the south and west sides of the home (the sides of the home that receive the most sunlight) when not found in the landscape. BMSB is similar in character with Lady Beetles and Boxelder Beetles, populating indoors and outdoors in the nearest heat source.Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs populate around doors, windows and screens that receive the most sunlight during the day. When fall arrives in Michigan, temperatures drop and BMSB begin to move indoors seeking shelter from the cold. While indoors they’re typically found invading living spaces and hiding in dark areas such as attics and crawl spaces. Even during the warmer winter days, BMSB can be found mobile. As winter ends and temperatures rise in the spring, BMSB is on the move towards the landscape and sunlight once again. Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is considered a nuisance pest simply because it populates indoors and, when threatened, the insect secretes a foul odor, remaining true to its name. As far as we know, Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is not linked to any health risks for humans or animals.
With the ever growing population of this bug, the question we need to ask ourselves is, “How do we keep them out of our homes?” Exclusion and eradication. For the homeowner, there are simple ways to keep BMSB, as well as other insects and spiders, from entering into our homes.
How to keep the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug out of your home:
- Check for cracks and crevices around all doors and windows that may need to be re-sealed.
- Screens that have holes should be replaced or repaired.
- Inspect the foundation of your home for cracks and seal them appropriately.
- Inspect your roof overhangs making sure the vents are completely sealed and have fine enough screens to keep all bugs from crawling into the attic.
Although exclusion from the home can help to reduce interior infestations, it still leaves us with this bug issue in our landscapes where they will be breeding and multiplying at a rapid rate. Pesticides should not be the only solution. Homeowners may find it easy to capture and collect these beetles since they are slow movers. Simply use a butterfly collection net and shake the plant’s foliage to drop them inside the netting. Once you have collected a large amount dump them into a small garbage bag and then tie it tightly for disposal.
How to remove the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Here at Contender’s Tree & Lawn, we provide a Perimeter Pest control treatment that can help reduce BMSB populations in the landscape and on the house. A band of insecticide applied around the foundation of the home, doors and windows using a backpack sprayer can effectively reduce the BMSB population on your property since these insects only breed and hatch outside making them vulnerable to our treatments. With the help of maintenance practices and proper pesticide treatments, residents and businesses are able to combat this epidemic by managing the BMSB population.
Posted on: August 4, 2015
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