When it comes to battling stink bugs in the home, the fight got very personal a few weeks back. Way too personal!
It was a beautiful Saturday evening. Actually, one of the few we have had during this so-far, very rainy, cold and sometimes snowy start to the year. It was supposed to be a relaxing night.
We fired up the grill and made a wonderful meal. Next, to make it a little better, we poured a glass of wine for each of us to enjoy. We sat down at the dinner table, and then it happened.
I knew the moment the wine left the glass and into my mouth that something was wrong. And instantly, our wonderful evening dinner was ruined. Somehow, someway, a dreaded stink bug had made its way into my wine glass, and then into my mouth! It was simply awful.
It’s actually still hard to write about it without getting queasy. Not only did I nearly swallow the nasty creature, it also decided to leave its trademark “stinky smell” when it entered my mouth. I spent the remainder of the night brushing my teeth 2000 times, following that with at least 100 mouthwash rinses. It is a taste and feeling I will have nightmares about forever!
Battling stink bugs, or Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs as they are officially known, has become front and center for millions around the country. They arrived years back as unwelcome, hitch-hiking guests from China on container boats. Ever since, the insect has simply flourished and spread like wildfire.
Battling Stink Bugs – The Bad News
The bad news when it comes to battling stink bugs – they have absolutely zero natural predators. Birds and other insects want no part of them at all. The same goes for pets. Our dog leaves them completely alone, learning quickly the horrifying smell that accompanies the bugs when they are messed with.
Even our beloved chickens, the most accomplished insect eaters of all, turn their little beaks away when one passes by. As for pesticides and sprays – if you were to choose that route – they are simply impervious to their effects.
With that said, there are a few things you can do to help alleviate them from your home. And they can go a long way toward keeping the nasty creatures under control.
Battling Stink Bugs – The Good News
Seal, Seal, and Seal Some More!
When it comes to battling stink bugs in the home, the best offense is a good defense. The most important task to control them is to seal off their entry points to the home in the early fall.
As cool weather approaches, stink bugs look to find shelter until spring, when they emerge to head back outdoors to mate and live. Stink bugs will find the smallest of cracks to enter and hide.
Be sure to seal windows, door thresholds, as well as cable lines, air conditioning lines and vent spaces into the home. This is where they sneak in, and sealing them with caulk will make a huge difference. If you need proof, remove a door threshold or a piece of window trim and see how many are living a happy life underneath.
Also, be sure to seal off spaces inside the home where they hide! Trim work, base boards, and small cabinet crevices are the stink bugs number one choice for a hiding spot. Eliminate those places, and they have a hard time finding a home to live out the winter.
Soapy Water Works
And when you do find them, drop them in a soapy mix of water. Where pesticides fail, soapy water works! The soapy substance hinders the stink bugs lipid coating on their protective shell. In the process, it kills them. It is a much more effective method than putting them in a paper towel, the trash, or even throwing back outside. They will find their way back! If you are looking for more great info on controlling pests – be sure to check out our article on keeping mosquitoes at bay : 4 Perfect Plants To Grow To Repel Mosquitoes From Your Patio, Yard & Garden
Here is to fighting the good fight, and keeping stink bugs out of your wine! Jim and Mary. To receive our 3 Home, Garden, Recipe and Simple Life articles each week, sign up for our free email list. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram. This article may contain affiliate links.