Attack of the stink bugs

These brown bugs are taking over West Michigan.

Stink bugs are taking over West Michigan. 

They were spotted in Michigan in 2010, and with virtually no known predators, the population has been increasing drastically every year. 

The flying insects, officially known as Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs, have a unique shield shape, and they emit a strong odor when squished. They're not poisonous to humans or animals, but they are very destructive to apples and stone fruits, like peaches. 

"I would expect, if you're seeing a few now, you're going to see them by the dozens--maybe even hundreds--as we get closer toward the end of October," said Howard Russell an Entomologist from Michigan State University. 

"And it won't stop. Last year, we had reports, people say them in their homes all winter long. So they're going to share your space as an unwelcome house guest pretty much all winter long if you're seeing them now."

MSU Extension is encouraging people to report where they see the stink bugs. Right now, they are most prevalent in the southwestern corner of the Lower Peninsula. 

How can you take care of the bugs that are already in your home or apartment?

  • You can set up a pan of soapy water and shine a light on it. The bugs are attracted to the light and the warmth.
  • You can also pour the soapy water mixture into the cannister of a Shop-Vac and then vacuum up. 

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