Don’t Smash It!
Over the last few years, we Realtors, homeowners, virtually everyone has noticed in ever increasing amounts, the dreaded Pentatomidae Pente. Ok, you give up? How about the Banksia shield bug?,…Nope, you still don’t get it,….ah, the stink bug!
In our locale, we will find them most common, offered in two flavors or shapes. If you have not seen them yet, you will, as they are most prevalent during the Spring and Summer months. These creatures do not die, you’ll see them moving a little slower come Fall, with the cooler temps. They will bed down for the Winter, chances are, in your home, only to return the following Spring.
So, who are these monsters?
Simply put, they are insects, capable of producing large populations. They primarily feed on plants or actually, the fluids. Their bounty also includes other monsters; the Japanese Beetle, that’s right, the creature you find on your rose bushes, Mexican Beetles and many other types of insects.
Where did they come from?
This is great! I have read, Pennsylvania, perfect. That’ll teach them, calling New Jersey the arm-pit of America. I’ve also heard Jenny brought them home from that awful neighbor, you know the family. How about the plant you purchased at the local grocery store? Ah, the dreaded Laundromat,… I prefer Mars,…who knows. As for Jenny, that red mark on her arm, nonsense, stink bugs don’t bite, don’t sting, all they do is stink, big time if agitated or smashed.
How did they get in my Holmdel New Jersey home?
Ok, this one is on the guys. The lazy bastards who leave the garage doors open all day long, you know who you are. In speaking with those in the know, through the vented, soffits of your home. They get into the attic, work they way throughout the house. Any area or space around windows and doors will provide access if broad enough. That pretty Hibiscus, even your fig tree, and any seasonal, tropical plants you put on your deck, leave out there all summer long. Check them before bringing them back in the house.
What do I do to get rid of them?
Let’s get beyond the obvious. Hmm? Maybe not so obvious. If you see one, if you see ten, twenty, whatever, simply, gently, grab it, grab them. A paper towel or tissue works nicely but do not squeeze, as little pressure as possible and deposit it in the toilet. You will find the handle, normally on the upper left side of the tank, push it in a downward direction. The paper towel should be thrown in the garbage can, not in the toilet. For you green types, you could also release the critter outside. Other devices may include a plastic spoon and prodding device, like a small section of paper. Leave the tweezers in the medicine cabinet. Don’t go crazy with the bug sprays, many will work but in some cases, these guys are immune. Chances are the crap in the bug sprays could be more of a pain. Purchase rose bushes to attract Japanese beetles. Hey, at least you won’t have to hang those ugly bags in your trees.
A couple of key notes!
Unless your senses are dulled or nonfunctioning, do not use the vacuum on these bad boys. The rollers, bristles will grind the creature/s into an effervescent purée, which you will enjoy for a very long time, each and every time you use your vacuum. Be mindful of Spot & Felix, the last thing you want is for the family pet to play with or smash your new found friends, especially into the carpet, sofa or your lovely comforter.
So lets recap. Chances are, you are not a dirty person, even if you are, it won’t matter. Do not relocate to Pennsylvania, (see above). Get familiar with our buddies, when you find one, show it to your children and educate, instruct them accordingly. If you routinely converse with your pet, do the same. Do not call 911. If you have to, form a self-help group or neighborhood watch. This is not a personal problem. If this becomes obsessive, an intervention may be necessary. Use the phrase infestation when looking for an excuse to keep your mother-in-law from visiting. In closing, do not antagonize, forcibly grab, squeeze or…smash!