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Pests/Do stink bugs hibernate?

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Question
Hello again Mr DeAngelis,

About a month ago I wrote to you with the problem of stink bugs getting into my house.  Now I have noticed something else that I want to ask you about.

I live in WV, and as you may know we have so far had a relatively severe winter in this area compared to recent years.  We have had below freezing temps for much of the winter so far.  And I have been seeing more and more stink bugs laying on my front porch, and appear to be dead, most of them laying belly up.  I sweep them off, but before too long there will be a bunch more taking their place.  My question is;  are these bugs dead, or are they just dormant due to the cold temps?  If they're not dead I will vacuum them up to dispose of them, hopefully to reduce the population around my house somewhat.  But if they are dead I will continue to just sweep them into the yard.  Do you know which is the case?  

Thank you,
Gary

Answer
Gary,

These bugs are probably emerging from their winter dormancy somewhere in the house. I am assuming these are the brown marmorated stink bug (see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/brown_marmorated_stinkbug.html for a picture). If you sweep them into the yard they will die before spring. This probably won't have any effect on the numbers next year because they can migrate long distance.

Jack DeAngelis

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects such as aphids and spider mites, insects that bite and sting such as ticks and wasps, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Organizations
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html Fine Gardening magazine

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology (the study of insects)

Awards and Honors
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

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