Kudzu bugs look kind of like a beetle and have a beak-like mouth, but they are really a bug. They were brought into the United States accidentally on cargo ships in 2009 and although they are not a huge problem yet here in Middle Tennessee, the number of kudzu bugs is on the rise. They will not hurt you; however, they can kill all kinds of plants and crops by sucking the juice out of them. They are considered agricultural pests that especially enjoy the kudzu plant, wisteria and soybean crops.
These bugs are a problem in the fall for homeowners when they are attracted to the warm sides of homes and other structures and gain access to the inside of your home through cracks and crevices. Once inside, kudzu bugs will find small, dark spaces to live in, like under floors and in vents, where they stay until spring.
Kudzu bugs move in great numbers, and it can be alarming for a homeowner to find out these bugs have invaded their home. When these bugs are afraid or threatened, they give off the most unpleasant smell (similar to that of the stink bug, of which they are a distant relative). The smell of one or two kudzu bugs might not be unpleasant, but the smell of many together can be quite another story. You should never squash a kudzu bug because it will emit this secretion with a terrible odor and can stain walls, furniture, and clothing. This secretion has also been known to cause skin irritations in some people.
You could try to prevent the entrance of these bugs yourself by sealing up all points of entry using sealant or caulk. Inspect your home to find cracks and gaps in your window and door frames, as well as your foundation and attic. Look at screens, vents, pipes, and cord entrances for gaps that could be sealed or caulked. Remove kudzu plants and wisteria from around your house, since these are plants that the kudzu bug will suck the juice from.
Another tactic that some people have tried is to vacuum up kudzu bugs that have made it into their home and place them in a bag with hot soapy water. It can be risky, since the kudzu bugs secretions could get on your vacuum and make your home smell terrible.
It is almost impossible to seal up every tiny crevice, and many DIY products are ineffective and costly. The best and most permanent solution would be to contact All-American Pest Control and let our professionals take care of your Kudzu bug issues for you. Not only can we quickly and effectively eliminate you current infestation, but we can also set up year-round protection services to keep your home free from these and other, more harmful, pests. Give us a call today and talk with us about how we can help.