How to get rid of Stink Bugs

There are hundreds of varieties of stink bugs, the ones that get the attention, though, are the Asian entries. They arrived on America’s shores in 1998 and spread across the country quickly. They swarm in the walls of homes, and wherever else they can make themselves comfortable.

The Asian entries aren’t the only problem causers, though, those native to North America have long caused issues for growers. Most types of stink bugs suck sap, damaging plants and leaving them weak. They aren’t picky, they’re happy to feed of vegetation, as well as fruit and vegetables.

How to identify Stink Bugs

The stink bug belongs to the Pentatomidae family, there are almost 5000 species in this family. The most common types are dusky, rice, Southern, green, and brown stink bugs. The other types include chust and shield bugs. The majority of them can be identified by their shield, which is a hardened area of the thorax that appears as an armor.

Their coloring can be mottled or solid, ranging brown bright green with orange or red trim, or brown and black. They are generally black in the south, while green in the north, and in the areas in between a unique color combination of both.

The stink comes from a gland which is located in the thorax, and the smell is described as rotten cilantro. It releases its stink as a defense mechanism, which is difficult for gardeners to contend with, especially if the bugs are in a cluster.

Stinkbug Damage

They have a voracious appetite, and feed from whatever plants they can find. Their preference is for fleshy fruits, but they adapt. Some stink bugs live on woody plants and cacti in arid climates. Though, they prefer irrigated crops that are commercially raised.

The crop damage that is caused by stink bugs is generally cosmetic, however, this can result in spoilage and early decay. Additionally, they leave pin pricks creating blemishes, and inject digest enzymes into the plant that results in discoloration. In leafy crops the damage can be seen in blotches, while corn will have dark spots.

How to Control Termites

The best methods to control termites are as follows:

  • You should control any natural litter to deny stink bugs a home during the winter months.
  • There are predatory insects that prey on stink bugs, so avoid using pesticides, as this will also have an impact on their presence.
  • Use row covers during stink bug season to stop them from getting access to your crops. If any bugs land on the covers, then drown them in soapy water.
  • The minute pirate bug, ladybugs, and lacewing bugs prey on stink bugs.
  • Kaolin clay can suppress stink bugs. The clay attaches to the bugs, which agitates them, causing them to leave. It also coats the fruit and leaves with a film that prevents them from feeding.
  • Neem oil and insecticidal soap are effective during the early stink bug season.
  • Stink bugs in your home? Add detergent and an inch of water to a turkey pan. Shine a lamp on the surface overnight, the light will attract stink bugs. The bugs that land in the water will be trapped by the detergent.