Subject: Bug invasion!
Location: Los Altos CA
June 27, 2016 5:42 pm
Hi bugman! I’m having a bit of a freak out here in Northern California (Los Altos), and hope you can help. There has been a sudden appearance of a large number of tiny black and tan bugs at my house. They seem to come from the foundation of the stucco house and swarm the walls and windows, and stream in through cracks in doors and windows! They show up in the late afternoon when it gets warm, and there are thousands and thousands of them, and then they disappear as it cools down in the evening. They don’t seem to fly, rather scurry along very quickly and seem to fall down from the wall if scared. They appear en masse on one wall one day and then will be greatly diminished in a day, but then appear along another wall a day or two later. We have had a drought here, so the ground is not damp, and they don’t look like the pictures of fungus-eating springtails I saw online. What could they be and what should I do to stop the invasion? Thank you so much for any guidance!
Signature: Disturbed by the force

Oh, I forgot to tell you about the size…they are tiny! Some are small like the size of a flea, and some are barely visible like the size of pepper. They also don’t fly, and don’t seem to bite, although I haven’t really given them a chance to try.
Thank you again!

Probably Dirt Colored Seed Bugs

Probably Dirt Colored Seed Bugs

Dear Disturbed by the force,
Your insects look identical to the ones in this two year old posting from Northern California that we identified as potentially Dirt Colored Seed Bugs in the family Rhyparochromidae. 

Probably Dirt Colored Seed Bugs

Probably Dirt Colored Seed Bugs

Hi Daniel,
Thank you very much for your help! Still quite disturbing to see those tiny dirt-colored seed bugs everywhere, but I am so glad to know what they are. I can now research them by name and see the best way to get rid of them.
Thank you again,
Elise

Location: Los Altos, California

One Response to Probably Dirt Colored Seed Bug Infestation

  1. Erik says:

    I am having the exact same problem right now across the Bay in Newark. I used to live in Los Altos and have never seen anything like this. It feels like a biblical plague. I’m glad I can now put a name to the pest … and that I’m not alone in having this weird infestation.

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