There is nothing more disconcerting than seeing a movement out of the corner of your eye and hearing the fluttering of wings. It is that time again where stink bugs find their way to the warmest places on campus: your dorm room.
The brown marmorated stink bug–or simply the stink bug–is a native from Japan, Korea, China, and Taiwan. It was accidentally introduced to the United States in 1998 as a stow-away in packing crates and has since then been considered an agricultural pest. Since 2010-2011 it has become a season-long pest in the United States’ orchards and farm lands, causing widespread damage to fruits and vegetable crops.
It has also been a menace inside homes and school dorms. Fall is the season for stink bugs to begin searching for warmer areas to live for the winter and will invade homes and structures to avoid the cooler evenings. Adult stink bugs can survive the winter by entering siding, windows, air conditioners, and any place where there is a hole. Once they are inside a structure, they go into hibernation mode and wait out the winter. However, because of the warmth inside the houses and dorms where stink bugs usually seek refuge, they are awakened and become active during the winter.
Your first instinct may be to stomp on them like any other bug, but you know that once crushed, the stink bug will release its smell and provide a map for other stink bugs. If you have not had the pleasure of smelling such an odor, it is has been described as a pungent odor that resembles cilantro.
A stink bug will emit this odor through holes in its abdomen not only when crushed, but any time it is handled, injured, and even when you attempt to move it. So how can you get rid of these things without it releasing its stench and attracting more?
“I simply get a tissue paper and catch them. Then I release them outside, unless I find them on my bed. Then they’re flushed [down the toilet],” says sophomore Ashley Davis.
Junior Nancy Lapkiewicz refuses go near them. “I get someone else to come over and kill it.”
While both methods are somewhat effective, the best way to get rid of stink bugs in a dorm happens to be sucking them up with a vacuum cleaner. According to mothernature.com, you can also try getting a spray bottle, mixing hot water and Dawn dish soap together, and then spraying the creatures as you see them. The only way for stink bugs to cease being a pest is for farms and orchards to start killing them off. No food source means no stink bugs. Until then, make sure to keep them from releasing their smell.