NEWS & UPDATES
Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Halyomorpha halys Stål
David R. Lance, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org
The brown marmorated Stink bug was found in 1998 in PA and most likely arrived a few years earlier. It came from China, probably in wood crates. The natural range of the stink bug includes China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan. It has been sighted and identified in the following states: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia.
How to Identify it:
The adults are similar in shape to other stink bugs- small head with wide body at the top that narrows (“shield shape”). Several shapes appear etched into the back- a triangle surrounded by an oval at the top and three other triangles at the sides. The antennae have white stripes and segments of the body that are seen from under the wings also exhibit white banding. They release a characteristic scent from glands on their abdomens.
Why It's So Terrible:
Bugs become a nuisance when they find shelter in homes during the fall and winter months. They are considered an agricultural pest as they feed on many fruit species including peaches, apples, cherry, raspberries, and pears. They also feed on a few vegetables including green beans, sweet corn, peepers, tomatoes and soy beans. Their damage has affected the Mid-Atlantic region in particular. Crops that are susceptible to the marmorated stink bug in the 33 states where it has been sighted are estimated to cost at least 21 billion dollars. The damage does not stop at agricultural crops- the bugs also affect many trees and shrubs, totaling an estimated 300 species.
Gary Bernon, USDA APHIS, Bugwood.org
How to Deal With It:
To control the damage the marmorated stink bug causes to agricultural crops pesticides, mainly in the pyrethroids and carbamates classes, are being used for short term and emergency control to salvage crops. However, the use of pesticides is not desirable over a long time periods because of expected resistance to the pesticide. Farmers will want to look to a more sustainable pest management plan once this research becomes available.
Home owners may also want to keep the stink bug from entering their homes during the fall season. This can be achieved by placing screens in windows, doors and vents, caulking cracks, and removing window air conditioning units where many of the bugs will enter. If any marmorated stink bugs do enter your home they can either be removed by hand or with a shop vacuum. If heavy infestation becomes an issue you may want to contact your local pest control company for further assistance.
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