How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs Before They Take Over
I did not get a picture of the giant stink bug on my window screen the other day because I am very much not a bug person. Even looking at pictures of them is more than I can handle. So I'm all for finding ways how to get rid of stink bugs, the easier the better. And if you've tried some of our suggestions for how to get rid of fruit flies, these techniques will sound familiar (which makes sense because stink bugs like ripe fruit almost as much as fruit flies).
The most common stink bug is the invasive brown marmorated stink bug, which was introduced to North America in the mid-1990s. They aren't picky about what plants they enjoy, and they will eat pretty much any part of said plant. They like sunshine and heat, and will enter a kind of "hibernation" period during winter months. That means that they look for warm places to hang out during winter (aka your house) and start crawling out of their hiding places when spring rolls around.
The most important thing to remember is that this bug is not harmful to humans. They might scare the living daylights out of you if one flies in your face or crawls out of a cabinet, and they smell terrible when they are squished (thus the name), but they don't bite. They are annoying though, so your first step dealing with a stink bug invasion is to keep them from getting inside in the first place.
Getting rid of stink bugs outside probably isn't going to happen, but again, they don't bite so focus your stink bug control on keeping them out of your home.
How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs
Block entry points. Caulk any cracks around door frames and windowsills. Block any crevices in wood siding and check light and electrical fixtures and utility pipes for any holes that might allow creepy crawlies inside. Check crawl spaces and chimneys, too.
Double check entryways. You might need to replace weather stripping or doorsweeps. Don't forget your garage door!
Patch holes in window screens. You might also try rubbing window screens with dryer sheets (some folks say that works as a repellent to get rid of stink bugs).
If you find a stink bug infestation in your home (and personally, we count infestation as being more than one bug), there are a few DIY pest control things you can try.
Chemical bug sprays don't seem to work on stink bugs, but you can try making a homemade stink bug spray made of squished stink bugs and water (assuming you don't get grossed out by even the thought of making that concoction).
Make a stink bug trap from dish soap, water and vinegar. Stink bugs are attracted to light, so place a lamp or night light above a large pan filled with soapy water. The bugs head for the light and fall into the water. It's not pretty way to get rid of stink bugs, but it works.
You can also fill a spray bottle with two cups of hot water, a cup of white vinegar and a half cup of dish soap and use that to kill the bugs.
Catch out-of-reach bugs by covering a dry sweeper with double-sided tape or a lint-remover sheet and using it to sweep the bugs up.
If you have a major infestation, you can vacuum them up, but you might want a dedicated shop vac. You definitely want to empty the vacuum cleaner every time you use it because they will crawl out.
Remember, the best way how to get rid of stink bugs is to keep them out of your house in the first place. It's a bonus that these tips will help cut down on all kinds of bug invasions!
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