Pender Gardener

Kudzu Bugs Moving Indoors

Slightly larger than a ladybug and mottled olive green and brown in color, kudzu bugs are attracted to light colors and high places as they seek out a location to overwinter.

Published: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 at 12:50 PM.

Kudzu Bugs Moving Indoors

Kudzu bugs are new pests in the south, making their debut in our area this past spring most notably on wisteria vines. After spending the summer outdoors feeding on kudzu, soybeans, field peas and other members of the bean family, these prolific insects are now looking for a cozy place to spend the winter. This could be nestled under tree bark, tucked into mulch or leaf litter, or dry and warm inside your house. Western areas of the state are already reporting a wave of home invasions by this pest, which is moving our way as cooler temperatures drive these bugs out of the fields and potentially into our homes.

 

Should I Be Concerned?

Kudzu bugs will not damage your house or harm you if you come in contact with them, though as a member of the stink bug family they do emit an unpleasant odor and may stain surfaces when crushed. Outdoors kudzu bugs can cause problems for soybean growers and vegetable gardeners by stunting plants and reducing yields of summer favorites like butter beans, field peas, and green beans. Indoors they are considered a nuisance pest since most people are not thrilled about the idea of hundreds of bugs hanging out within their walls.

People living near soybean fields or kudzu infested areas are most likely to see kudzu bugs around their homes. These bugs are particularly attracted to light colors and high places and often congregate in large numbers on the sides of white buildings, light colored cars, and other reflective surfaces. They will also gather on the trunks of trees and shrubs but do not cause any damage to ornamental plants.

 



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