Issue 16, September 25, 2017

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Activity Increasing

Brown marmorated stink bug is well established in several urban areas of Illinois. We've starting getting several reports a day out of many of these areas. BMSB was first confirmed in Illinois in 2010. Since then, we have seen populations continue to increase. Throughout the last seven years, you've seen countless articles monitoring its spread and detailing its potential effects as an invasive pest.

Past Articles:
Know this Invasive
New Uninvited House Guest
Fall is Officially Here

As we move into fall, plants are starting to senesce and BMSB is moving around a lot more. They are becoming that nuisance pest they are so well known for.

The recommended strategy for managing BMSB is exclusion – work at keeping them out of the home by sealing cracks, crevices, repairing screens, etc. Currently the best method for removing these pests from the home is by vacuuming them or simply, I like to tell people to flush, freeze, or crush them. Dropping them in warm soapy water works as well.

We generally don't recommend foggers as the stink bugs are good at getting into places the foggers won't reach. Applying pesticide in homes may also cause additional problems as it may attract other insect that will feed on the dead BMSB.

If you are dealing with them on the outside of your home, you may want to contact a pest control company who can do a perimeter spray. This should be done when BMSB first start to appear, but it's important to note that control may be hard to achieve as they are very mobile and you can get re-infestation from others in the area later. It's also important to consider the effects of pesticides before any application occurs. Here is some information from Rutgers University regarding perimeter sprays:

Figure 1. Current confirmed distribution of brown marmorated stink bug in Illinois.

While we rely heavily on citizen reports of this pest to help determine its distribution throughout Illinois, I am primarily concerned with areas of the state where we have not officially confirmed this pest (see figure 1). We, of course, are more than happy to answer questions and recommend homeowners contact their location Extension offices as well. (Kelly Estes)

Kelly Estes

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