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Watch Out For Stink Bugs In The Fall

Watch Out For Stink Bugs In The FallDuring the fall, the temperature can drop rapidly between days, and an unprepared insect could end up freezing where it stands. To get away from that, many insects will look for warm, humid places where they can hibernate safely or otherwise keep active until it’s safe to go outside again. As a result, insects that normally wouldn’t bother people can end up invading their homes in large numbers if the conditions and the temperature outside is just right. This includes stink bugs, a pest insect native to East Asia that bothers gardens across Maryland and the rest of the United States.

Stink bugs get their name thanks to their primary defense against predators: the smell. If you crush a stink bug, it will release a smell that can make almost any animal cringe and want to get away. This means you shouldn’t just smash them if you find stink bugs hiding out in your house, but there may be too many of them to grab them one at a time and toss them outside. So how should you handle them?

• Clean up food waste. Stink bugs aren’t picky eaters, but they won’t be a problem for long if they don’t have anything to eat.
• Find and remove any leaky pipes or other sources of moisture. All life needs some amount of water to survive, and stink bugs are no different.
• Instead of crushing or smashing the stink bugs, suck them up using a vacuum cleaner. This limits how far their smell can spread. However, keep in mind that many of the bugs may still be alive when you empty out the vacuum container.
• You can also drown stink bugs by filling a container part way with soapy water and flicking the bugs into the water. Thanks to the soap film, the bugs will always end up drowning.

Stink bugs can release a nasty smell if you’re not careful, and the fact that they can all gather in your house means the whole place can fill up with a terrible scent if you try killing them all. Instead, use smarter strategies that get rid of the bugs without crushing them and you’ll get much better results.

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