What Are These Black and Orange Bugs?

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A few days before Halloween, you could see some unexpected flashes of black and orange that aren’t your decorations. There is nothing wrong with your vision. What you’re seeing may be a bug called a box elder.

 

What is a Box Elder?

The adult length of box elder bugs averages around half an inch. The margins of their black torsos and wings are outlined in orange. Long antennae and a flat, oval body distinguish these insects.

The beak-like mouthparts of box elder bugs allow them to suck nectar off flowers, leaves, and even the younger limbs of trees. Although their common name suggests that they prefer box elder trees, these insects have been observed on many other species of trees.

 

Why Are Box Elder Bugs In My Home?

These bugs spend the most of the year outside, beginning in the spring and continuing through the beginning of September. However, as the weather cools off in the middle to late autumn, box elder bugs will commonly seek shelter on the south and southwest facing walls of buildings.

After getting in, they’ll do some snooping around to locate a way inside. This is a surefire recipe for finding box elder bugs in your house.

 

Should I Be Concerned About Box Elder Bugs?

The box elder bug is an annoyance pest. They pose no threat to you or your loved ones and won’t inflict anything in the way of damage. Nonetheless, they are not welcome in any dwelling.

You might find them munching on your houseplants if they get inside before the season is finished. As an added bonus, their feces can leave a permanent stain on whatever light-colored furniture they happen to sit on.

The good thing is that they don’t reproduce in the winter, so even if they find their way inside, there won’t be a sudden surge in their numbers to deal with. It’s more likely that they’ll spend the winter in your home, either in the attic, the walls, or the spaces in the floors. Although not real hibernators, they do enter a dormant period and become relatively inactive over the winter.

They all decide to come out of hiding and return to the outside when springtime comes and the weather starts to warm up, which creates a significant disturbance. When you squash them, a foul smell may come out. You may find them suddenly emerging in strange places.

 

What Can I Do To Combat Them?

It is possible to keep box elder bugs out of your house by following a few simple precautions. The best course of action is to do a thorough inspection of the exterior of your home and seal off any potential entrance points you may locate. Any holes in the roof, siding, or screens, as well as any flaws in the foundation, windows, or walls, count as such. Additionally, you should cover any chimneys or vents.

The best course of action to take if you find box elder bugs in your Florida home is to contact On Demand Pest Control. We’ve got the know-how and gear to get rid of the box elder pests in your home for good.

Get in touch with us today to find out more about the pest control services we offer for homes.

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