During the Spring and Summer months, you are likely to come across a whole host of bugs, insects and other pests around your property. As the weather gets better, these species start to come out of hibernation and, more importantly, begin to mate.
Here we have created a comprehensive guide answering some of the top questions we are asked, from identifying a stink bug egg to knowing if you have a problem and what you should do about it.
Where are stink bugs commonly found?
The brown marmorated stink bug originates from China, Japan, and Korea, but it has found its way much farther afield over the last century. As an agricultural pest, stink bugs can often be found in crops in orchards, farms and gardens. They can even be found in residential settings in parks, home gardens, and anywhere that is ideal for them to lay eggs or hibernate. They are widespread in parts of Europe and the US which is why they have become a serious pest problem in cargo and shipping containers.
How to identify you have an infestation
It will quickly become apparent if you have a stink bug infestation as you will find them congregating in large numbers, either alive or dead. They can generally be found in warm areas out of the shade during the Spring and Summer, whereas in the Winter, they can be found hibernating in warehouses, residential properties, factories and other sheltered spaces.
In agricultural settings, it usually becomes apparent if an infestation is present as crops will be damaged. In other locations, stink bugs are evidenced mainly by their foul odour. If they are disturbed or crushed, they will emit a foul-smelling chemical that many people compare to rotten eggs or skunks.
Does one stink bug mean there are more?
As stink bugs don’t live or move in groups or colonies, it is very unlikely that you will see more than one stink bug at once. However, one stink bug is often an indicator that there are more as they tend to congregate in areas with good sources of food and shelter.
How to identify stink bug eggs
BMSB eggs are usually laid on the underside of a green leaf, making them very difficult to spot at first. They are primarily white, pale green or pale blue and have a circular barrel-like shape. Stink bug eggs are laid in groups of 28, and as they develop, they can become slightly more translucent, allowing you to see the two red eyes of the growing nymph.
How long does it take for stink bug eggs to hatch?
Stink bugs only take a maximum of five days to hatch into nymphs after being laid. From there, they will aggregate around their eggs during this first stage of their life. Within a month, these nymphs will develop into fully grown stink bugs, capable of reproducing and attacking crops.
Steps to remove stink bug eggs
The first step to removing stink bug eggs is never to handle them without gloves. Whilst stink bugs and their eggs are relatively harmless, the foul-smelling chemical that they emit not only is unpleasant but can cause an allergic reaction.
Once wearing gloves, you can handle the eggs and throw them in soapy water or remove the leaf holding that the eggs are attached to and dip it in insecticidal soap. This will quickly eliminate the eggs without causing damage to the surrounding plant life.
Once you’ve established you have a stink bug infestation, you must deal with them as quickly as possible. Throughout the warmer months, they will continue to wreak havoc and breed, whilst in the Winter, they will hibernate in homes and other properties.
Instead of dealing with a stink bug infestation alone, it is always advised to seek out the services of a professional and licenced pest control company.
Urban Hawks Fumigation Services
If you are concerned about Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs on your cargo or have any questions about meeting the import requirements for Australia and New Zealand, please don’t hesitate to contact our team. Urban Hawks are proud to offer a range of fumigation services throughout the UK, including shipping container fumigation. It is common practice for exporting countries to have goods fumigated, and our team can treat goods in containers or under sheets across the country with a 12-24 hour turnaround.