One of the negative aspects of our increasingly mobile world is the introduction of invasive species into the United States, unwelcome hitchhikers in bags and cargo from other countries. On average, Florida sees approximately a dozen new insect species in a year as a result of this type of passage. One of the more recent and pervasive invaders that can be found in Florida today are the brown marmorated stink bug. Chances are you have seen these stink bugs, especially if you have been out as dusk as it seems like that is their favorite time of day. The stink bug is easily recognizable, with a shield shaped brown trunk and orange abdomen.
Originating from eastern Asia, these pests were first seen in the United States in 2001 in Allentown, Pennsylvania. They eventually made their way down to Florida and thirty-nine states in total. While these bugs don’t bite they do have an unpleasant odor if stomped on, hence their name. In addition to the smell, the stink bug invasion is also wreaking havoc on local crops, with fruit trees being a favorite to the bugs. In addition, the stink bugs also have a taste for common ornamental plants that homeowners often plant around their yards and gardens. Florida isn’t the only location in the country seeing a heightened population of this stink bug. Residents in California have been instructed to used vacuum cleaners to dispose of the overload of insects and a resident of Maryland counted over 50,000 stink bugs on his property. Friends and family refused to visit his home due to the overwhelming nature of the infestation. One proposed method to attempt to control the exploding populations of these bugs is possibly introducing another bug and natural enemy of the stink bug, the wasp Trissolcus.
As the temperatures begin to cool, you might begin to find these bugs making their way into your home. They can get inside through even the smallest opening so it is important to make sure that any cracks and crevices around your home are repaired to keeps these stinky pests out. In addition, routine pest treatments to your home, such as Sunstate’s exterior treatment program will do the job. Our services are offered as monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, or annual treatments. We can work out a plan based on your needs and budget, give us a call and we will keep the stink and the bugs out!