Latest Wisconsin Insect: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
The hits just keep coming, in the form of more unwelcomed 6-legged visitors whose real home is across the waters.
A tide of persistent insects has washed over our Waukesha County neighborhood Pewaukee and Wisconsin in the past 2 decades: the Japanese beetle and gypsy moth to name a few. All are innate to foreign countries. All have caused environmental and economic havoc in the United States, where no natural predators exist to control them.
The latest invader winging its way here will literally make a smell.
The brown marmorated stink bug is ¾-inch long, with a wide back side that tapers to a point, and a rectangular head with long antennae. Native to China and east Asia, the insect has been migrating west since being first discovered in Pennsylvania in 2001.
Its name is well-deserved. When disturbed or stepped on, the brown marmorated stink bug emits an awful, nasty you'd invite into your Waukesha County home, right?
Fortunately, the brown marmorated insect hasn't arrived in great numbers in Waukesha County or Wisconsin. Stink bug control isn't much of an issue yet. Yet it's only a matter of time.
Farmers dislike them for more than their stink. The insects feast on tree fruits, vegetables, sweet corn and soybeans. Mid-Atlantic apple growers sustained an estimated $37 million in crop losses in 2010 to marmorated stink bugs.
The Asian invasive has a cousin that is native to the U.S. The brown stink bug looks a lot like the brown marmorated version, except the colors of their undersides are different. We somehow doubt you'll get that far identifying them, though.
Brown marmorated stink bugs like to winter inside Waukesha County your house. If you crack one, you'll figure it out quickly. The nose knows. If you see more in your Waukesha County house or yard, don't smush them – contact The Mosquito Guy to address their presence in a safe, non-stinky fashion. Unlike these bugs, we'll never stink up your joint.