Pro Tips on Cleaning Up Stink Bugs
Autumn in New England is all about pumpkin spice lattes, cozy sweaters, Instagram-worthy foliage, and all the classic Halloween flicks. While most of us are guilty of loving these simple pleasures as the seasons change, there are some other seasonal patterns that tend to come with the autumn package that aren’t quite so welcome: namely, stink bugs.
Many New England homeowners fall victim to the sea of these odorous intruders every year, and these pests tend to invade the same houses year after year. Luckily, there is hope for those who seem to have an invisible target painted on the outside of their homes… But the trick is in the timing.
For stink bugs and their other “fall invader” comrades, effective control must be done early. We're talking before they even get inside, early. After that point in the year -- which typically happens around early September -- you no longer need professional pest control: you need a clean-up crew. For those who are dealing with the aftermath of post-entry, we have a few pro tips on how to avoid common mishaps when cleaning up after them.
Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum: If you’re inundated with fall invader pests, the vacuum is an attractive option to suck them up fast in large numbers. But appliance holder beware: Just because you don’t see them, doesn’t mean you can’t smell them. A vacuum bag full of rattled or dying stink bugs can still fill your home with their trademark stench, so it’s best to empty the canister after each use, or use an older vacuum that you don’t mind using as a smelly martyr after the end of the bug-battling season.
Soapy water: If you just see a few and don’t care to pull out the large appliance, a recycled water bottle will do the trick. Just fill the bottle half-way with water and a squirt of dish soap, and knock the bugs into the water as you see them. Since a stink bug’s innate reaction to fear is to drop straight down when disturbed, it should be easy to encourage them into the bottle, where the lethal soap bath awaits them in a container that will trap.
Freeze them out: Remember that they are inside for a reason: They wouldn’t survive the outdoor temperatures. Stink bugs are incredibly slow-moving, making them easy enough to catch and release outside, leaving Mother Nature to do her job. Or, in a pinch, the toilet should work just fine.
It’s important to remember that stink bugs won’t bite, sting or damage your home; but their numbers can drive just about any homeowner crazy. That’s why it’s important to plan ahead now if stink bugs are recurring pests in your home. While it’s a bit late in the game to keep them out this autumn, you can make sure that you’re on the list next year to get a preventative treatment against these pungent pests.
Give us a call today to make sure you’re covered next year for stink bugs and other “fall invader” pests.