Friday, January 05, 2007

Brown Marmorated Stinkbug Halyomorpha halys new pest for NJ, PA & NY

In 2003 the Rutgers Cooperative Research & Extension service posted an article about the Yellow Brown stinkbug actually known as the Brown Marmorated Stinkbug, Halyomorpha halys . The stinkbug was apparently inadvertently brought over from Asia.

I noticed a brown stinkbug on our bedroom window screen in the fall and thought nothing of it. Later the bug appeared in the bedroom and could be seen flying around like the Asian ladybugs. I finally caught, photographed the bug and was curious to find out what kind of bug it was because it has unusual markings around the edge of the wings, like the short stripes on the pharaoh's headdress or a tortoise's shell. Googled it and found the Rutgers website which listed it as a imported pest and had a good description with photos. They want the public in the tri-state area, NJ, PA, and NY to report any sightings to see how far the bug has spread and you can do that on the site.

Here's an excerpt from the site: "The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug,
Halyomorpha halys (Ståhl), is an exotic insect
belonging to the order Hemiptera or true
bugs. Halyomorpha halys, sometimes also called the
yellow-brown stink bug or East Asian stink bug, is native
to Asia and is considered an important agricultural pest in
Japan where it attacks soybeans and various tree crops.
It was first collected in the United States just across the
Delaware River in Allentown, PA during the fall of 1996.
Since then its presence has been confirmed in Lehigh,
Northampton, Monroe and Pike Counties in Pennsylvania.
In 1999 the brown marmorated stink bug was first
recovered in New Jersey from a black light trap run by the
Rutgers Cooperative Extension (RCE) Vegetable IPM
program in Milford, NJ. In 2002, it was again collected
from blacklight traps located in Phillipsburg and Little
York, NJ and found on plant material in Stewartsville, NJ.
A specimen was also brought into the Morris County
Cooperative Extension office in 2002 by a homeowner
who lives in southeastern Morris County."


The brown marmorated stink bug is a sucking insect
that uses its proboscis to pierce the host plant in order
to feed. This feeding results, in part, in the formation
of small, necrotic areas on the outer surface of fruits
and leaves of its hosts causing characteristic cat-facing
injury in fruits such as apples and peaches. In its native
range, H. halys feeds on a variety of fruits and other
host plants including apples, cherry, citrus, figs, mulberry,
peach, pear, persimmon, and soybeans.
In Pennsylvania, H. halys has been observed feeding
on many ornamental plants and trees including crab
apple, Norway maple, pyracantha, American holly,
and butterfly bush in 2003. The stink bug has also
been observed feeding on peaches, Asian pears,
string beans, asparagus, and raspberries. It is uncertain
if H. halys will become a widespread pest in
the eastern United States.
Adults also exhibit behavior similar to Asian ladybird
beetles and boxelder bugs and can congregate on
houses in late fall and eventually move indoors. Once
inside they can become a nuisance and emit an offensive
odor if crushed. Chemical control recommendations
are not currently available. Your best option is to
vacuum up the insects and release them outdoors or
dispose of the vacuum bag. Caulking windows and
doors, etc., in areas where the insect congregates on the
outside of the house or structure, should help prevent
them from entering."

More information and photos from the Northeast Intergrated Pest Managment site.

What's marmorated? From Webster's revised unabridged dictionary: "Variegated like marble; covered or overlaid with marble" now you know.


Blogger Digital Flower Pictures said...

I'll keep my eye out for this stinker. Thanks for telling me a bit more about stinkbugs in general. I always see them in the gardens but really wasn't sure what they were doing there.


7:53 AM  
Blogger Ki said...

Hi dfp,
Conn. isn't that far away so they've probably migrated there in the 10 years since the first sighting in PA. If you spot one, I'm sure the Rutgers people would be interested. After I sent in the photo and placed a report , I got an email back from the researcher who wanted me to send in the specimen. Unfortunately I threw it outside but later found another one in the bedroom. I flushed the second one down the toilet before I got the email. I'm looking around the house to see if I can find one more. ;)

9:33 AM  
Blogger Annie in Austin said...

It's pretty cool that you worked out the identity and then found a place to deliver that information.

Should I should wish you luck with finding another stinkbug?? Maybe not!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

12:07 PM  
Blogger Ki said...

Hi Annie,
I actually did find another one as soon as I disposed of the first by letting it go outside. This was after taking the photo but before I googled it. The second one I drowned in the toilet by putting in some detergent to break the surface tension, sinking the bug. I later got back an email from the Rutgers researcher wanting the specimen. Well, I had to tell her that I threw out the first one and drowned the second. Today (Sat.) I found another one on the screen door. The temps were so warm, over 70 that I think the bug thought it was Spring and wanted out. So now I have a bug to send in. Third time's a charm. This does not say very much good about new home construction. Our home was built 10 years ago and these stinkbugs and ladybird beetles easily manage to come in. Apparently our yard is infested with these bugs. It's a good thing I quit trying to grow fruit trees.

7:16 PM  
Blogger George Africa said...

Hello Ki;

I have little hope of pursuing a career in entomology although my wife has a friend who has spent his life that way. Your report about the Brown Mamorated Stinkbug has me wondering because this season there was a large stinkbug in the gardens. As fall approached and I began to use the leaf vac, I could smell a distinctly more potent smell than ever before. Could be??

There are so many new insects in the garden every year that I always have a collection of clear plastic notion containers by the back door. When I see an insect I don't know, I put it into a container and then into the freezer for identification later on. It's almost "later on" as that's a winter project.

Thanks for the information.

George Africa

5:06 PM  
Anonymous "Gump" - Lynchburg, VA said...

Thanks for the informative article.

We currently have a problem with these insects in Lynchburg, Virginia. If you want a clue as to their spread.

7:46 AM  

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