Stink bugs

Asked October 11, 2015, 7:12 PM EDT

Family in sw Portland has a heavy population of stink bugs, and here in Gresham we're starting to see them. Not sure if they are the brown marmorated stink bug, but the picture looks like them. It seems there is no really effective pesticide to use, but pheromone traps are suggested. Is that the recommended treatment, or is there some other way to get rid of the bugs? And where would one find the traps? Thank you.

Multnomah County Oregon insect issues insect identification stink bugs

1 Response

You can verify the identity of the stink bugs at your place by comparing them with the pictures on this pest alert. The diagnostic characteristics are the white bands on the antennae. Those bands distinguish BMSB from native beneficial insects, rough stink bugs.

Their activities in Oregon so far have been mainly as a nuisance pest. BMSB remain outdoors during the growing season and seek refuge indoors during the fall and early winter. Once indoors, the good news is that BMSB don’t damage anything, they don’t bite people or pets, nor do they breed. Basically, they’re just hanging out for the winter.

It’s pretty common to find an occasional BMSB indoors but, if you have many of them, prevent more from entering your home – seal all possible entries with caulking, weather stripping, and the like. Seal the interior during fall and winter but wait until July or so to seal the exterior.

Pesticides seldom work during the growing season – they may knock down the stink bugs but the insects commonly walk away within 2 hours – and definitely don’t work during the fall and winter. A simple and effective trap for indoor use has proved itself more effective than pheromone traps. The good news is that you likely already have the components on hand: A shallow pan of soapy water with a desk lamp shining on it. Outdoors, you can either flick individual stink bugs into soapy water or, if they are very numerous, use a wet-dry shop vac.