Pests are the last thing homeowners want to worry about as we enter fall and anticipate the holiday season. Homeowners in Wisconsin are very familiar with our typical seasonal pest invaders, but what about the occasional invader?
Although major infestations of pests like boxelder bugs, Asian lady beetles, and brown marmorated stink bugs are rare, it can still be very annoying when you can’t figure out how to get rid of them. That’s why we offer special one-time treatments to get rid of them, as well as our PestFree365+ plan, which ensures you’ll be protected all year long.
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Identifying the Occasional Invaders
Boxelder bugs, Asian lady beetles, and brown marmorated stink bugs probably aren’t the first pests that come to mind when you think of a pest infestation, but these fall invaders get their name from occasionally invading structures.
Boxelder Bugs: A common nuisance for homeowners across North America, they tend to congregate in large numbers, especially during the fall and winter months.
- Flat, oval, and black with reddish-orange markings on their back
- Congregate in the fall on the south side of trees, homes, and structures
- When crushed they emit a foul odor and will stain surfaces
- Will be found in large numbers around your home’s foundation and ground-floor windows
Asian Lady Beetles: Often mistaken for ladybugs, Asian Lady Beetles were brought to the US as a form of crop pest (like aphids) control but are more of a nuisance than a benefit.
- Mustard-yellow to a dark reddish-orange with spots on the wing covers (but in some species, the spots are absent)
- Slightly larger than typical ladybugs
- Dark “M” shaped marks on the space right behind its head
- Release a foul odor when disturbed and will stain surfaces
- Can be found in attics, wall voids, on siding, and inside closets
- May be attracted to light
Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs: This occasional invader will not bite or cause structural damage to your home, but if they do find their way in there’s not much that can be done to avoid the smell.
- Marbled grayish-brown and shaped like a shield
- Gather on the south and west sides of buildings when the sun heats exposed surfaces
- Mainly agricultural pests, they are nuisance pests for homeowners due to their attempts to overwinter
- Emit an obnoxious smell when crushed, frightened, or disturbed
These pests will attempt to invade your home in the fall in search of a safe place to escape the coming cold to overwinter. If you suspect you may already have an infestation, don’t hesitate to call in the professionals.
How Do I Prevent These Fall Invaders?
Given the nature of these occasional invaders, the best way to protect your home is to prevent them from getting inside in the first place. They are active for a short period of time, so be sure that all prevention methods are applied before the first frost.
- Keep the area around the foundation of your house clean/free of debris
- Repair/replace any torn screens on windows and doors
- Trim any overhanging branches or overgrown shrubs near your home
- Repair and seal any cracks and crevices around windows, eaves, doors, insulation and siding
- Pay close attention to places where pipes and wires enter your home
- Sprinkle food-grade diatomaceous earth around entry points and other vulnerable areas. This natural substance is abrasive to pests but safe for humans and pets.
Some essential oils, like peppermint and lavender, are natural pest repellants. Mix a few drops with water and spray on windowsills and at entry points. Not much can be done beyond vacuuming them up once Boxelder Bugs, Asian Lady Beetles, or Stink Bugs get in. Batzner Pest Control offers a fall service that creates a barrier of protection around your home.
Occasional Invader Prevention in Wisconsin