There are more than 200 types of stink bugs in the United States. Until recently, three stink bugs (southern green, green, and brown) were the primary plant pests, but they rarely bothered people in their homes. Today, we have two additional types of stink bugs affecting U.S. residents – the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) and the kudzu bug. The brown marmorated stink bug creates a serious problem in fruit, vegetable and crop production. As it spreads across the U.S. it has a greater impact economically and is a serious annoyance in many homes. The kudzu bug is a pest in the Southeastern parts of the U.S. In additional to feeding on kudzu (a type of plant), this pest is also a serious threat to soybeans.
Adult brown marmorated stink bugs are approximately 2/3 of an inch long with various shades of brown on the top and undersides. They are a shield-shaped, making them almost as wide as they are long. Adult kudzu bugs are 1/8 - 1/4 inches long, with olive green coloring. Like brown stink bugs these are also shield-shaped.
Brown marmorated stink bugs have been located in over 30 different states, but concentrated in Eastern ones. This species of the stink bug can also be found in California, Oregon, and Washington. The kudzu bug has been found from northern Florida to Virginia, and west to Alabama and Tennessee. Kudzu bugs have also occasionally been found in Mississippi.
Both of these stink bugs will invade homes through cracks and crevices in the outside doors and windows. They survive winter best in attics and where they can find a warm nook or cranny. During warmer winter days, these pests might surface into your living area.
The best way to control these two species is to seal exterior openings prior to fall and winter seasons.
Yes, if they feel threatened they may bite for self defense. Stink bugs are not poisonous to humans, but their bite can cause swelling or rashes on the affected part of the body.