What Every Fairfax Resident Should Know About Stink Bugs
September 15, 2022 - Stink Bugs
Stink bugs aren't all that dangerous. They don't spread disease or destroy property, and they can't hurt you. But – true to their name – they stink something fierce. They stink so bad that they can make living in your own home unpleasant if they invade it in large numbers. They can also be a serious pain if you like to garden because they can damage and destroy all kinds of plants from the rose bushes in your landscaping to the peppers in your vegetable garden. That's why they should still be part of your Fairfax pest control plan.
Ew! What Are Stink Bugs?
Stink bugs in Fairfax – specifically the brown marmorated stink bug that was discovered here in the 90s – are not native to Virginia. They are actually from Asia and introduced themselves into the US by hitching rides in shipping containers. With no natural predators that could break through their stinky defenses, these smelly bugs spread throughout the US with ease. Now, much of the country is living with a veritable stink bug invasion.
Bugs That Are Commonly Confused For Stink Bugs
There are several different bugs you might see in our area that can easily be confused with a stink bug. Stink bugs can look a lot like squash bugs, conifer seed bugs, boxelder bugs, and kissing bugs. In our area, one of the bugs most likely to be confused with stink bugs is the squash bug.
Squash bugs are shield-shaped like stink bugs, and they also smell when scared or harmed. The best way to tell a stink bug from a squash bug is their body shape. Stink bugs are more angular. They're shaped almost like a battle shield. Meanwhile, squash bugs are longer and narrower, and they have a rounded rear instead of a pointed one.
Why Do Stink Bugs Want To Be Inside Homes?
Stink bugs eat leaves, flowers, fruits, and veggies. They can invade fields and orchards in large numbers, sometimes doing significant damage to the crops. The stink bug diet means that your home doesn't really contain anything stink bugs want to eat. They cannot sustain themselves on a couple of apples in your fruit bowl or the house plant in your window. They need large amounts of plant matter. This means if you're seeing stink bugs in your home in the summer, they're likely wandering in by accident.
On the other hand, once the winter sets in, stink bugs hit diapause, which is basically like insect hibernation. When this happens, stink bugs start to desperately search for a warm place to bed down for the winter. Your climate-controlled house is often the best option. That means you could see a huge uptick in indoor stink bug activity when fall temperatures start to drop and stink bugs start to reduce their activity.
Professional Stink Bug Control In Fairfax
When you wind up with a massive stink bug problem, professional stink bug control is the only way to go. It's easy to control stink bugs when you've just got one or two accidentally wandering in from outside. But when thousands upon thousands decide your warm house is the best place for them to ride out the winter, there's not much you can do about it on your own. Sprays aren't all that effective at killing them, not to mention the fact that you'll just be stuck with a bunch of dead stink bug bodies instead of live ones. That's not a whole lot better.
For the best stink bug help, call the experts here at SPRK Pest Solutions. We can help make sure your stink bug problems are a thing of the past!