So, you've found yourself face-to-face with a swarm of these shield-shaped menaces.
Sure, they're harmless.
They won't bite, they're not poisonous, and they won't hurt your family or your pets. But who wants to share their home with a colony of buzzing bugs?!
When you have had it up to your eyeballs with stink bugs and you're looking for a solution, you've come to the right place.
Read on for top solutions on how to banish these bugs for good!
Method 1: Prevent Stink Bugs In The First Place
As the leaves begin to change colors and fall off the trees, homeowners should get serious about guarding their homes against unwanted new tenants.
This is when stink bugs begin to seek out places to spend the winter months in their hibernation period called diapause. Once they've found a place to "nest" for the winter, these insects blast out what's called an aggregation pheromone.
Essentially, this sends a message to the rest of their tribe that they've located a safe place to hang out for the season. Once the aggregation pheromone has been excreted, a swarm of these little guys appears, and you've got an infestation on your hands.
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Conduct Regular Home Inspections
How can you stop this from occurring in the first place?
Make sure that you're checking your home from top to bottom on a regular basis. Every few weeks, be sure to examine your home's structure and feel around for any loose points in the structural integrity. This is where insects of all kinds—not just stink bugs!—can make their way inside and live rent-free on your property.
Still not sure what to look for during your home inspections?
Here's a checklist to help point you in the right direction. Also, take a look at the entry points listed in this video for a general idea of where to check your own home.
Use Seal and Caulk For Stink Bug Prevention
If you do find holes or evidence of wear and tear in your home's structure, it's time to get to work!
Be sure to seal up any opening, no matter how small. These openings are used by pests of all sizes as entry points to your home's nooks and crannies, where insects and nuisance animals can sometimes live undetected for long periods of time...totally unbeknownst to the homeowner!
Make sure to seal all the holes with spackling paste or caulk them with a sealing agent. This will ensure that your home is secure from unwanted pests making their way inside, no matter the season!
Method 2: Vacuuming Stink Bugs To Help With Clean Up
Using a vacuum is one of the most popular methods of stink bug removal due to its ease and simplicity.
Using the hose attachment, simply point the hose in the stink bugs' general direction, and watch them magically get sucked away. If you have a small handheld vacuum, you won't need an attachment at all—just aim and watch your problem bugs vanish before your eyes.
Some online outlets recommend to dump your stink bugs down the toilet, but this can cause problems with your plumbing. Instead, we have a better solution.
When you're ready to empty out the vacuum dust container, freeze it. This can be a little gross to think about, which is why we're telling you ahead of time.
Give your vacuum's collection container a thorough cleaning BEFORE you vacuum up any stink bugs, then remove the container, cover it with plastic to create a makeshift lid, and stick it in the freezer overnight.
The stink bugs will freeze, making disposal a snap! Simply shake out the frozen container in an outdoor area as far away from your home as possible.
Scaring Stink Bugs To Spot Them
When they've already taken over a home or a building, stink bugs tend to congregate in the highest point of the structure. Generally, they like to hang out on ceilings, in eaves, on top of high shelves, and in awnings.
Thankfully, though, they're kind of clumsy. They fall out of their high hiding places pretty easily, which is the main nuisance people experience when they've got stink bugs crawling around their homes. These stinky bugs seem to fall from the sky at random onto the dinner table, into someone's hair, onto a the pages of a book being read...the list goes on and on.
You can use this natural behavior quirk to your advantage by scaring a group of stink bugs on the ceiling with a baseball bat or a broom handle, then collecting the bugs as they fall into a vat of soapy water below.
Method 3: The DIY Stink Bug Turkey Pan Trap
Researchers from Virginia Tech recently shed some light—so to speak—on a new way to trap and control stink bugs in the home.
This trap, made from materials which can normally be found lying around a regular household on any given day, was shown to be 14 times more effective at trapping stink bugs than commercially-produced traps which can cost up to $50.
Here's what you need:
- a foil roasting pan
- dish soap
- a table lamp
How the DIY trap works:
- The roasting pan is filled with water and splashed with dish soap, creating a light froth of bubbles at the top.
- The table lamp is switched to the ON position next to the roasting pan and set overnight.
- The reflection of the light from the lamp on the silver foil attracts the stink bugs, which then causes them to hop into the water.
- The bubbles created by the dish soap prevent the stink bugs from being able to move, eventually leading them to drown.
Check out the demonstration in the video below!
The Bottom Line About Stink Bug Removal
During the cooler months, there's no doubt that you might see a few stink bugs buzzing around your property. If you do happen to see the classic shield-shaped bodies or hear the helicopter-like buzz of these bugs, don't fret!
In our guide, we've outlined methods you can use to rid your home of the stink bugs for good. Just because these bugs stink, doesn't mean your home has to!
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