What Stinks? Keeping Stink Bugs Out of Your Buffalo, NY Home

stink bugSometimes, pests are hard to track; they scurry, they hide and they instinctively know how to survive almost secretly under your roof. Stink bugs originate from Asia, but were introduced to the U.S. in the 1990's and have become a growing problem ever since. What gives stink bugs away is exactly what you are probably thinking it is--their smell. Stink bugs don't bite or damage your home like carpenter ants or termites, but the smell they exude is very unpleasant. Stink bugs release an awful order when they sense danger or are crushed. The smell is hard to get rid of, especially when you have an infestation. Here's how you can avoid a stinky situation: 

How to identify stink bugs

It's pretty easy to recognize a stink bug one you see them. Stink bugs have an easily identifiable triangular plate between their forewings known as the scutellum. The plate almost looks like a shield in appearance, often with markings in a green or brown color. Stink bugs are a little under one inch in length and usually ? of an inch wide. Under their thorax are the scent glands that produce their rank smell--so they're not a bug you want to pick up or crush inside your home. 

How to prevent stink bugs

Stink bugs typically first hide in the insulation of your home to stay warm when cold weather hits. As the weather worsens, they will make their way further inside your home. It's common to find stink bugs around lights, walls, ceilings and draperies; they make their way inside through entry points such as cracks in pipes, window and door frames, torn screens and gaps for cables. The warmth and light of your home is a welcoming attraction to stink bugs (and pests of all sorts). 
 
While stink bugs aren't going to damage the structure of your home, the smell of them is enough! Stink bugs are very persistent and actually give off a pheromone signal to other stink bugs when they find a safe environment--yikes! The best way to prevent stink bugs and any insects from entering your home is to seal and block off any cracks or openings in:
 
  • Windows
  • Door frames
  • Siding
  • Pipes
  • Electrical outlets
  • Chimneys
  • Screens 

Signs of a stink bug infestation 

If you find more than one stink bug in your home, it's likely they are starting to gather. Visually seeing stink bugs or smelling the horrible odor they produce is a clear indication that there is a problem. The aggregation pheromone stink bugs release will attract more, so if you smell them, other stink bugs surely do and are on their way to visit your home. 
 
You can't blame stink bugs from releasing an odor from their abdomen--they're just trying to stay alive and not be eaten by birds or other bugs. However, their odor is known to smell similar to coriander, or a rotten, soapy smell. Most likely you do not want your home to smell like an infestation of stink bugs, so if you find more than one gathering in or around your home this fall, call Ehrlich to come and inspect the situation!

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