Skip to main content

A disgusting, smelly bug has invaded Minnesota

It's literally called a "stink bug."

Bad news, Minnesota, there's a stink bug on the loose and there's not a whole lot you're going to be able to do about it. 

We're talking about the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, a hitchhiker from Asia that's troubled the east coast of the United States for about a decade and has plans do the same here in Minnesota. 

According to the New York Times, these stinkers release a skunk-like smell when they're smashed, or even if they feel threatened. 

Likely a statewide problem

"Chances are it will be a problem statewide if it gets to the outbreak levels like that of out east," said Angie Ambourn, a supervisor entomologist with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, in an interview with GoMN.

The invasive bugs attack crops, especially apple, grape, soybean and other vegetables grown in private gardens, according to the MDA. Whether they will attack crops in Minnesota is unknown. 

They're waking up in your house

This is sort of disturbing, but they find ways into homes for warmth in the fall, then fall asleep like a hibernating bear and start waking, now.

"They are already starting to come out of their dormancy and are moving around," Ambourn said. 

"This is typically the time of year that we see an increase in calls regarding BMSB. They had moved indoors to get away from the winter and now with it warming up they are starting to get active again."

How to get rid of them

Don't smash them. The smell they emit is just awful, and you'll know it when it hits your nostrils. Ambourn recommends that you have screens on your windows, seal cracks and crevices around your home, and if you have to, vacuum them up or sweep them back outside. 

Sounds like they fit nicely down a toilet, too. 

The good news is that most reports in Minnesota thus far are for single stink bugs, not groups of them. The bad news is that they're not going away. 

"I think it is safe to say they are here to stay," said Ambourne.

Next Up

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Charges: Driver threw 'large rocks' at police car during highway chase

Authorities say the suspect had used methamphetamine earlier in the day.

covid, coronavirus

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Friday, January 21

Hospitalizations dipped from 1,629 Jan. 19 to 1,571 on Jan. 20.

minneapolis police

Shooting near University of Minnesota kills 1, injures 2

The victims were all in a parked car when the shooting happened, police said.

canada bodies found 2

Florida man charged with human smuggling after 4 die, 5 rescued near border

A baby and an teenage boy were among those who were found dead feet from the U.S. border.

Screen Shot 2022-01-21 at 8.42.40 AM

Man shot while driving on I-394 in St. Louis Park

The driver and his bullet-riddled SUV wound up outside the DoubleTree hotel in St. Louis Park.

Mall of America

Mall of America to celebrate 30 years with events, giveaways throughout 2022

The festivities will kick off Friday with a '90s-themed drag show.

Screen Shot 2022-01-21 at 7.29.00 AM

Victim of 1994 Michigan cold case murder ID'd as missing Minnesotan

Shelley Rae Kephart went missing from Hennepin County more than 28 years ago.

Mike Zimmer

Coller: Did the Vikings wait too long to fire Zimmer, Spielman?

This wasn’t just ugly. This was ugly, ugly.

walz flanagan lorie shaull flickr

Gov. proposes 'Walz Checks' for most Minnesotans

The governor wants to use $700 million of the state's surplus to fund the payments.

Hutch crash booking photo

Walz, Flanagan call on Hennepin Co. sheriff to resign

"I would say that it is time for him to resign," the Lt. Gov. said.

line 3 enbridge portage lake hubbard county mn tony webster flickr

Months after missing deadline, Enbridge says Line 3 aquifer breach is fixed

The company told Bring Me The News it "successfully stopped the flow of groundwater" at the site.


box elder bugs

The boxelder bug invasion has commenced in Minnesota

They love to cluster in sunny and warm locations.