Along with turning leaves, cooler temperatures and the beginning of the school year, stink bug sightings around the house are another sure sign that fall has arrived. These pests begin to enter homes at the onset of cooler weather looking for overwintering spots. it is not that difficult to take necessary steps now to deny stinkbugs entry before they completely invade your home.
Years ago, stink bugs were only found in a few states but, since, have quickly spread to more than 40 states, including Tennessee. Although these pests present a significant agricultural problem and concern for farmers, they are also a major nuisance for homeowners.
Stink bugs release a chemical alerting their brethren to an area they’ve settled in, it’s important to prevent their entry in the first place.
The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) notes that stink bugs typically gather near windows, lights, TVs or computer monitors that throw off light and warmth and secrete a bad-smelling, bad-tasting fluid when disturbed or when crushed.
The NPMA offers the following advice to keep stink bugs out and remove them if they are already inside:
- Seal cracks around windows, doors, electrical outlets, ceiling fans and light switches. Pay close attention to areas including around siding and utility pipes, underneath the wood fascia or other openings.
- Keep branches and shrubbery well trimmed; store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house and five inches off the ground.
- Replace outdoor lighting with yellow bulbs, which are less attractive to stink bugs.
- Use a vacuum to eliminate stink bugs indoors, empty the contents into a plastic bag and dispose of them immediately.