An adult brown marmorated stink bug (University of Georgia)
ATLANTA -- You may have seen them crawling outside your home -- or even worse, you may have smelled them.
Stink bugs are finding a new home in Georgia. It's already worse than last year.
Right now they're outside on plants, basking in the sun. However, the cooler the temperature gets, the more they'll want to warm up inside your walls and even living room.
Heavy rain from the summer kept the plants that feed stink bugs very healthy. Now that it's colder, a larger bug population will be making a beeline to get inside your house.
"There absolutely are more this year than last year," said Kim Kelley-Tunis.
The brown marmorated stink bug has been migrating farther south every year. It's fingernail sized with stripes on its antenna. You'll see them on bushes and plants now. Soon they could be in your walls, creeping in vents, window cracks and door sweeps.
"As the temperatures begin to drop a little bit more, you're going to see the stink bugs try to make more a push inside homes and other structures," Kelley-Tunis said.
Despite their name, you're much more likely to actually see a stink bug than to smell it. The scent comes when they're distressed or scared. Like a skunk, it's their natural defense. But what do they smell like?
"That's an interesting question. It's just a bitter odor. It doesn't smell like anything in particular. It's just a malodor," Kelley-Tunis said.
The best way to get rid of them is a good defense. Seal doors, air vents and windows, or call an exterminator.
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