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Stink Bugs

Class: Insect
Other names: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Color: Mottled brown and cream, black and white banding
Size: 5/8″
Legs: 6
Diet: Sap from trees and plants
Predators: Predatory stink bugs, assassin bugs, egg parasitoids
Hazard: Mostly annoying to homeowners, but can cause significant damage to fruit and vegetable crops
Interesting Fact: The brown marmorated stink bug hitchhiked from Asia to the U.S. on a packing crate in the mid-1990s. Since that time it has spread to 41 states by traveling on RVs and campers moving from campsite to campsite.

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is Unwelcome Foreign Invader

Have you come to dread the sight of the brown, shield-shaped brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB)? You’re not alone. These stink bugs are a nuisance to homes around Baltimore and an agricultural pest responsible for damage to many fruit and vegetable crops throughout the U.S.

The BMSB has:
• Mottled brown and cream colors on its back
• Black and white banding on the edge of its abdomen and on its antennae
• Six brown legs with faint white bands
• White to light gray underside with grey or black markings

The stink bug gets its name from the unpleasant smell it releases when it is threatened or crushed.

A Stink Bug’s Path of Destruction

The BMSB sucks sap from leaves, fruits, buds and blossoms of fruit trees, creating spots and causing blossoms to drop prematurely or fruit to grow deformed. Plants like tomatoes, soy beans, lima beans and sweet corn are also susceptible to stink bug damage.

The stink bug lays clusters of 25 eggs from June through August. The eggs are light green and barrel shaped; the nymphs that hatch from them are yellowish and mottled with black and red. They go through five different stages before they reach adulthood.

Stopping the stink

BMSBs may seem to be everywhere within your home. To keep out as many as possible:
• Seal cracks around doors and windows with caulk and window stripping
• Remove window air conditioners (a favorite entry point)
• Put foam spray around electrical outlets on outside walls to seal cracks
• Repair screens
• Keep branches and tree limbs away from windows
• Use yellow bulbs instead of white for outside lights

You can suck the stink bugs up with a vacuum cleaner. (The stinky smell disappears quickly.) If you have large numbers clustered in one area, you can try brushing them into a bucket of soapy water, since they are not good swimmers.

If you can’t stand the thought of coping with the brown marmorated stink bugs for another season, give Brody Brothers a call at 410-653-2121. Stink bug extermination in Baltimore, MD can be a simple and effective method to keep these unwanted pests away.

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“I have been with Brody Brothers for 5.5 years. Ari has been coming to my home for all this time. He does a great job. I hardly ever have an issue. He keeps us pest free which isn't easy living in the woods.”

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