Homeowners deal with a number of pests around the house, yet none is smellier than the stink bug. These insects are mostly harmless but are definitely annoying and a relative newcomer to Texas. They require appropriate bug control to prevent them from becoming a problem.
By following the suggestions offered below by bug control companies who deal with them, homeowners can reduce their chance of attracting these insects. The right bug control services can keep most homes pest free all year long.
What Are Stink Bugs?
Stink bugs are grayish-brown, shield-shaped insects that feed on vegetative matter and pose little threat to humans or pets. Originating in Asia, they have been in the U.S. since 1998, slowly spreading throughout the country. These insects possess stink glands on their thorax, which they express when agitated to release a musty, smelly odor.
Although they are destructive to agricultural crops, they are not harmful in other ways except for their unpleasant smell. The goal of stink bug control is mainly to keep them out of the house and also control populations.
Stink Bug Habits
Although they typically produce once a season, bug control services dealing with these pests have found stink bugs may do so more than once in warmer climates. They become active in the spring and remain so all summer into the early fall, then seek shelter in warm, moist places. Bug control companies find them hiding in homes in the fall and winter and commonly make themselves known by their smell.
Controlling Smelly Stink Bugs
Stink bug control companies recommend the following tips for keeping these odiferous insects out of the house and preventing them from infesting a yard:
- Practice Good Home Maintenance - Begin by removing entry points where these insects can get in by repairing screens, patching cracks in the walls and foundation, sealing around utilities where they enter the home, and around doors and windows. Do not forget to install screens over chimneys and attic vents. Keep all sources of food well-sealed and put away, reducing the chance of attracting any insects.
- Reduce Moisture In the Home - Inside the home, practice good bug control by reducing moisture and preventing dampness. Detect and repair any leaks and prevent moisture with good home ventilation. Use dehumidifiers in problem areas to keep all areas of the home dry and less welcoming.
- Maintain Yards and Landscaping - Stink bugs propagate by leaving fertilized eggs attached to the undersides of leaves and on plant stems to hatch into nymphs. So bug control services must include a well-pruned landscape that includes trees and bushes trimmed away from the house. Inspect plants frequently and keep firewood piles at least 20 feet from the house or preferably stored off ground. Control weeds and vines and prevent them from growing onto home surfaces.
- Vacuum, But Do Not Squish - These pests seek warmth in the home and are frequently found on lampshades, draperies, and screens as well as in warm corners. If they are discovered, avoid squishing them or they will release their stinky smell. Instead, vacuum them up and immediately dispose of them in the trash. Get rid of vacuum bags quickly or dump canisters into plastic bags and discard.
While most homeowners will only have to deal with a few of these odiferous insects in the winter, more than a few could indicate a need for more aggressive bug control methods. Discuss stink bug problems with bug control companies that can determine whether treating the home and yard are necessary to keep these pests at bay. With spring finally here, the time to get the jump on these pests is by contracting bug control services now!