Identification: Weird Large Bugs on House Plants

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by corsierosie, Mar 17, 2016.

  1. corsierosie

    corsierosie Member

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    I've been noticing these bugs on my house plants for a while and at first I thought it was just a few wondering in from outside but there are too many of them now for that to be the case. They aren't very active. They usually are sitting still and eventually die. But their droppings are quite annoying little brown puddles. And I've been finding them all over my house. They especially like sitting on my house plants. I don't think they are eating them but I would like to know what they are and know where they are coming from. Anyone else familiar with these guys? Thank you for any advice or help with what to do about them.
     

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  2. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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  3. Sundrop

    Sundrop Well-Known Member

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    These are stink bugs.

    They came from the outside in the fall to overwinter in a cozy, warm place. Now sensing that spring is just around the corner they are waking up and coming out from their hiding places. Let them out if you can, or just let them die in peace inside. They are harmless.
     
  4. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Not harmless, if these are indeed brown marmorated stink bugs (and they look like it to me with the banded antennae):

    Scientist SWAT team combats stink bug invasion - WSU News - potentially Washington state's public enemy number one re: agricultural pests over the next few years.

    http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/FS079E/FS079E.pdf : it is suggested to collect it, freeze it, and then take it to either a WSU Extension office or Master Gardener clinic.

    It won't be long now before the pest reaches British Columbia -- with huge impacts on the apple and wine industries. Information for British Columbians: http://www.agric.gov.ab.ca/crops/hort/bv2013/bmsb-alberta.pdf
     
  5. Sundrop

    Sundrop Well-Known Member

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    Daniel,

    What I said is based on my own experience. But, after all, I don't grow a huge monoculture. I have an organic gardens where I grow a lot of different plants and flowers that I intercrop, and I support and encourage biodiversity on my whole property. With the exception of dormant oil that I spray on a few selected plants very early in spring I don't use pesticides, so all kinds of bugs, good and “bad” can take care of each other the way it has always been in Nature. In the summer the buzzing of my insects is the most welcome sound for me. Late in the fall many of them, mostly ladybugs and all kinds of stinkbugs, try to find a place to overwinter inside my house. I am pretty familiar with them.

    The information in the article at the agriculture Alberta website seems to be not precise. From my observation the bugs are here where I live in BC for a very long time. What they probably wanted to say is that it won't be long now before the pest will start attacking heavily sprayed with pesticides and treated with synthetic fertilizers monoculture plantations in BC.
    Plants grown that way are unable to develop natural resistance, what, combined with the lack of predator insects, can easily lead to a disaster.

    It is not bugs that are at fault, it is the conventional growing methods.
     
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  6. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    There are plenty of native stink bug species that aren't a problem. Brown marmorated stink bugs are an introduced invasive and have caused significant economic damage where they've invaded.
     
  7. togata57

    togata57 Contributor 10 Years

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    All over the place here in central Ohio.
    When the temp warms up a bit here they are, clinging to screens, on the ceiling, lampshades, countertops---and to the leaves of my houseplants.
    Worse in the fall, when the cold-then-warm weather reminds them to seek refuge inside the house.
    They have an uncanny ability to appear from nowhere.
    Startling when one ZOOMS past, wings making a low-pitched whirr.
    A freezing blast from a can of compressed air zaps 'em.
    Usual method is to wrap the unwanted visitor in a cold wet paper towel and deposit in the trash. Squishing will often result in the release of stink.
    Fortunately they are slow and do not bite.
    Unfortunately (though understandably) no other creature seems to fancy stink bug as a snack.
     
  8. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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  9. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Thanks Junglekeeper. That site links to this article for PNW growers: Stinkbug continues its spread

    I'm in agreement with @Sundrop that avoiding monocultures is one of the best ways to avoid or mitigate pests, but chillingly this is mentioned in the article:
     

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