Think Bedbugs Are Bad? Say Hello to Stinkbugs!

These smelly creatures are looking for a place to spend the winter.

Think Bedbugs Are Bad? Say Hello to Stinkbugs!

These smelly creatures are looking for a place to spend the winter.

-Jane Farrell

disgusted woman

Heads up, entomophobics! (That’s people who are freaked out by bugs, and really, who isn’t?)

On the heels of the bedbug invasion, which has closed upscale stores in Manhattan and spread across the country, is the stinkbug assault. So far they’ve attacked in 29 states, including East Coast states like Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey, where they’re causing massive gross-outs.

The bugs apparently came in from overseas ships, and, according to The Washington Post, they are “here to stay.” The good news is that they don’t cause health problems, but that’s probably not much comfort to people who find 30 to 40 stinkbugs on their porch windows or living-room walls. And, of course, they stink. They really stink.

The Post reports that the level of stinkbug activity is especially high now because the weather is growing cooler on the East Coast, and the little darlings want to find a home for the winter. The newspaper also says that “things should settle down” in the next few weeks, and by spring they’ll try to “escape from your house.” (By spring, we’re sure stinkbug sufferers will have done their best to kill every last one.)

Read Bedbugs Love to Shop!

The recommended method of disposal: vacuum them up and get rid of the vacuum bag fast. Or, as one guy did, you can always smash a group with a shovel and hope the resultant worse-than-usual stink will warn other stink bugs that your place is dangerous for them.

Unfortunately, the invasion of the bugs has ramifications that go way beyond homeowner troubles: They pose a danger to crops, and in some areas have destroyed up to 25 percent of the apple crop. Other affected foods include corn, tomatoes and soybeans.

And in the bedbug-update department, MSNBC reports that they can damage your love life: if you sleep in a guy’s bed and he has bedbugs, you’ll get them too; they love to travel straight back to your place on your clothes or overnight bag. So it pays to check out all potential boyfriends, or even the ones you’ve got already. As we all know by now, bedbugs require extensive, difficult treatments by exterminators, and you might even have to throw out all your clothes. Can you imagine what that would do to a relationship? (Washington Post, MSNBC)

Jane Farrell is a senior editor at BettyConfidential.

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