Judging by the title of this article you may have already assumed that the insect invaders being referred to are stink bugs. Actually they are not stink bugs, but many people who have fallen victim to these invasions have also assumed that the smelley flying insects were none other than stink bugs. Despite the fact that these insect invaders are not stink bugs, it is understandable that many people have assumed that they are. After all, stink bugs are notorious for the foul odors that they emit as well as their tendency to invade people’s homes. A specialist in entomology from the University of New Hampshire’s Cooperative Extension has confirmed that these bugs are actually known as the western conifer seed bugs. Now that the public knows that these intrusive bugs are not stink bugs, several concerned residents of New Hampshire want to know if these seed bugs can be dangerous or damaging in any way.
According to the entomology specialist mentioned above, Alan Eaton, from a non-expert’s perspective these bugs may be similar looking to some stink bugs, but a distinguishing characteristic is a seed bug’s rear legs . The rear legs of these bugs extend sideways, which makes them look like leaves. This is why the west conifer seed bug belongs to a family of insects that are known as leaf-footed bugs. Much like stink bugs, the seed bugs will not typically emit their foul odors unless they feel threatened. If someone were to handle a seed bug, then its odors would likely become apparent. Luckily, the foul smell that seed bugs emit is the most unpleasant aspect of this bug’s nature. These bugs are harmless, as they do not spread disease, they do not damage structures, and they do not even bite humans or pets. These bugs are invading homes in order to find a warm shelter for the winter. Most of these bugs will head toward attics or other locations in people’s homes that are rarely frequented by the residents.
Seed bugs are commonly spotted during the fall, but not to the degree that people are seeing this year. The relatively high population of seed bugs that are invading homes this year is the result of favorable weather conditions during the past year. It is hard to pinpoint which climatic conditions led to the rapid proliferation of these bugs, but favorable moisture levels are a big factor. Once these bugs gain entrance to your home, they will compete for living space by killing other bugs. However, if you want to keep these bugs out of your home, which anybody would, then sealing the cracks and small openings located throughout your home is a must.