Kudzu the plant you can find all over the days. Showing up more and more in the state of Tennessee is the Kudzu Bug. The Kudzu Bug is a relative to the stink bug. It does not attack people (for the most part) it only pierces into the stems and leaves of plants and sucks the nutrients out of the plant. The kudzu bug is an invasive species that has started showing up damaging soybean and other crops. If you run across some kudzu plant these days you are assuredly going to see some kudzu bugs as well.
Being an invasive species there is no natural enemy to the kudzu bug. A wasp from Japan has shown up in the south that does kill off kudzu bugs by taking over the kudzu bugs eggs with their own eggs. This wasp hasn’t been found in Tennessee as of yet.
What to Do with the Kudzu Bugs in East Tennessee?
- If you have had stink bug or ladybug problems in your house in the last few years then you are likely going to have issues with the kudzu bug. All these insects are looking for more inhabitable environments as the weather gets colder.
- Kudzu bugs, much like stink bugs, do not need to be smashed on. The kudzu bug gives out a similar stink smell when they are killed. So do not smash them. Tell the kids not to smash them.
- If you want to get rid of the bugs just use a vacuum to clean up the bugs and then dispose of them. Use the suction tools instead of the normal vacuum brushes to avoid squashing the bugs and creating a smell.
- Removing any vegetation that might be attracting the bugs is a helpful prevention for keeping the kudzu bugs further away from your home. If kudzu is all over your home or nearby then expect to deal with the bugs for much of winter.
Kudzu bugs are not the worst thing to have in your home. They are relatively harmless unless a particular person is allergic to the toxin the bugs put off. More annoying than anything, the kudzu bug is going to become a bigger and bigger presence in our lives in East Tennessee. We need to get used to that and roll through these highlighted practices before we freakout about a bug invasion in our house.