Stink Bug Epidemic Spreads As 33 U.S. States - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Stink Bug Epidemic Spreads Across 33 States

KHQ.COM - Few of us ever come to terms with the idea of bed bugs infesting their house and home. But now a new threat is on the rise that is arguably worse - stink bugs.

Sightings of the brown marmorated stink bug have been reported in 33 states so far this year, a rise of eight since fall alone.

The pest appears to be spreading from its traditional home in the mid-Atlantic coast throughout America, experts said.

The only areas to escape the epidemic are the Rockies and the Plains but everywhere else homeowners have found thousands of the dime-sized creatures infesting their homes in beds and in sofas.

Stink bugs are named after the smell they emit whenever they are squashed or crushed.

Like bed bugs they do not transmit disease and are not poisonous.

They do however bite you, eat your plants and vegetables and emit an appalling stench when they are squeezed that resembles decaying garbage.

They are also almost impossible to get rid of and have wings which means they fly off when you try to catch them.

So far this year the bugs have been spotted as far west as California, in Minnesota to the North and Florida in the South.

According to USA Today the eight states recently infected are Arizona, Iowa, Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin.

Hailing originally from China, Japan and Korea each stink bug has the capacity to lay up to 30 eggs per nesting session.

They are transported long distances by cargo containers or from garden to garden simply by the wind when it is strong enough to carry them.

Entomologist David Rider of North Dakota State University said there were 4,700 species of stink bugs in the world and 250 of them were in the USA and Canada.

The brown marmorated one in the America is causing all the problems - they were first accidentally introduced to Pennsylvania in 1987 and have spread since.

Last summer there was a hugely damaging infestation in the mid-Atlantic states where people found ‘thousands in their homes'.

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