Feb 8, 2017
Identifying the invasive stink bug

Several insects look similar to the invasive brown marmorat­ed stink bug (BMSB), includ­ing brown stink bug, spined soldier bug, and dusky stink bug.

In fact, on www.stopBMSB.org, a website of the Northeastern IPM Center dedicated to the invader, the most popular page (besides the home page) is the one about stink bug look-alikes.

You might confuse BMSB with native, brown stink bugs of the genus Euschistus. An easy way to distinguish them is to look at their undersides. BMSB has a brown-gray underside; brown stink bugs, native to North America, have a yellowish-green underside.

You can distinguish the spined soldier bug, Podisus maculiventris, from BMSB by looking at the shoulder an­gles. The spined soldier bug has sharp, acute angles at the shoulders compared to BMSB, which has more rounded, obtuse angles. The spined soldier bug, as a generalist native predator, reports for duty as a good soldier and in fact will eat BMSB.

The dusky stink bug, Eus­chistus tristigmus, is generally smaller than BMSB. Dusky stink bugs also have point­ed shoulders, similar to the spined soldier bug.

For detailed photos of the brown marmorated stink bug and to tell the good bugs from bad, visit http://stopbmsb.org/go/HEDQ.

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