Every year throughout Virginia and much of the Mid-Atlantic region, brown marmorated stink bugs are a nuisance to homeowners and a potential economic threat to farmers. During the spring and summer these insects feed on a wide range of fruit and vegetable crops. Then they ride out the cold winters by hiding out in your home entering through windows, cracks, and other small openings in your house.
“This invasive species from Asia is rapidly spreading throughout much of North America as well as Europe” said Tom Kuhar, professor of vegetable entomology in the Department of Entomology in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech. “Over the past 10 years, researchers from Virginia Tech and other institutions have discovered a lot about the ecology of this bug and how to best manage it on crops and in homes.”
Controlling brown marmorated stink bugs is typically done using insecticide treatments on the crops they feed on.
However, there are some homemade traps and techniques such as closing off entryways that can help reduce the number of stink bugs in your home. A simple way to trap them using an aluminum pan, light, and dish soap is shown in this video: https://youtu.be/l9ldpGmYQHk
The overall goal of Kuhar’s program is to develop, evaluate, and help implement sound integrated pest management practices that can enhance the profitability and sustainability of crop production in Virginia, as well as improve food and environmental quality by minimizing the use of toxic pesticides. His research focuses on investigating the biology, ecology, and control of arthropod pests and to use this knowledge to develop and deliver useful pest management information to agricultural clientele and the scientific community.