Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

Subject: Found in my Daughter’s Room
Location: New York (Long Island)
April 11, 2016 6:49 am
My daughter (4 years old) has always been both fascinated and scared of bugs, so finding the attached bug in her room at bedtime was an adventure.
We captured the bug carefully, and while I was taking it outside, realized that we had never seen this sort of bug before. So we carefully put it on the ground and put a plastic cup over it. My daughter ran and grabbed her magnifying glass immediately and started to examine it. With the cup between her and it, she felt brave enough to look at it and ask questions, like “what does it eat?” and “how did it get inside?” Once she was done, we took it outside and put it in the flower bed.
It was found on Long Island (New York) in April, just relaxing on a wall in my daughter’s room. I think the picture is pretty good, and you can zoom in for more.
I’d love to talk to her again about what sort of bug it is, and provide more info; she’s naturally very curious and the more she learns the more she wants to know!
Signature: –David

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

Dear David,
We applaud you trying to educate your daughter regarding insects, but we wish you had encountered a better species for this lesson.  This is a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug,
Halyomorpha halys, and while it is not dangerous to humans, this is an invasive species accidentally introduced to North America from Asia.  Because the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is able to feed on such a wide variety of plants, it has quickly spread across the entire continent of North America, and it is expected to become a significant agricultural pest.  Additionally, it is a species that seeks shelter indoors when weather begins to cool, making itself known in the spring when it tries to find egress.  It is the bane of thousands of homemakers who find they are sharing their warm homes with countless Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs.  Again, they pose no direct threat to people or homes, but they are a nuisance.

Thank you very much for the very prompt reply!
I guess we’ll just replace one lesson with another.  From friendly and useful insects to the invasion of areas by non-indigenous species and the impact it can have.
Seeing as I found one already – should I expect to find me?  And what’s the best course of action when they are found?

Finding one means you will more than likely find more.  Though we typically encourage tolerance of the lower beasts, we don’t have much tolerance when it comes to invasive species, like the Argentine Ants.  We do not have any reservations to manually squashing Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs when we find them in our home office.

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