How well do you know the enemy?
Here are 10 stink bug facts to help you understand what you're up against.
1. The type of stink bug that is currently ravaging the mid-Atlantic is the brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys). The species is distinguished by its patterned legs, antennae and shield-shaped back.
2. Brown marmorated stink bugs are not native to the U.S. The first ones were reported in Allentown, PA in the mid-1990’s. They arrived stowed away in packing material from an Asian cargo shipment.
3. It’s obvious how stink bugs got their name. They have glands that release an odor as self-defense when they’re disturbed or killed.
4. You’ll notice stink bugs on houses in the fall as they look for warm spots to hibernate for the winter. They creep into homes through cracks and crevices, siding, screens, and the space around window unit air conditioners.
5. Stink bugs don’t actually bite, but can prick you with their beaks if disturbed. They don’t carry diseases.
6. They don’t lay eggs inside of your house. Stink bugs mate and lay eggs outdoors on tree leaves. Each female will lay about 400 eggs.
7. They leave a smelly brown residue which marks where they've been, and attracts others.
8. Stink bugs have no natural predators in the U.S.
9. Because of their “armor”, they’re very resistant to pesticides. Stink bugs have a waxy coating that makes it tough for poison or pesticides to get through the exoskeleton.
10. Stink bugs suck plant juices from fruit and destroy field crops. You may notice them in your gardens, or on fruit trees.
What other facts about stink bugs do you have to share? Add a comment below!