Have you stumbled upon a stinkbug lately? If you have, researchers in Yakima, Washington want to know more about your encounter.
Washington State University’s Mike Bush is asking for digital photos or freshly frozen stinkbugs of any color and species, along with details where and when the bug was captured for a pest survey they are conducting this year.
If you capture any bug that resembles a stinkbug, please mail the specimen to Mike Bush, with WSU Extension in Yakima, along with information telling where the bug was captured (the town or county or GPS location), when it was found (date) and on what host plant they were found on.
Please mail (freeze them for 24 hours and place them in a plastic pill bottle) suspected stinkbugs to to Mike Bush, Extension Entomologist, 2403 S 18th Street, Suite 100, Union Gap, WA 98903. Digital images sent to firstname.lastname@example.org may be acceptable as well.
Adult stinkbugs are a well-known family easily recognized by shield-like shape, five-segmented antennae, and for producing a most disagreeable odor when provoked. They can come in various shades of green, brown and black. There are a number of species in this family that are known for unwanted feeding and vandalism of plant crops like raspberries, apples, tomatoes, and peppers. They may attack and damage ornamental plants en mass.
In 1988, a statewide survey revealed 23 species of stinkbugs in Washington. In 2014, this number was increased to 47 species including the invasive and dreaded Brown Marmorated Stinkbug that was found in a handful of counties. We have reasons to believe more stinkbugs exist in Washington State.