Stink Bugs

Did you know? Stink bugs get their name from the “stinky” smell released when you crush them or when they’re protecting their homes.

Stink Bug Facts & Information from PestWorld for Kids

Stink Bug Fats & Information for Kids & Adults

Originally found in East Asia, stink bugs weren’t even reported in the United States until the late 1990’s! Now, stink bugs are found in 38 states ranging from coast to coast. You might have noticed these pests crawling around your home during the fall when the weather gets cooler – but you shouldn’t be afraid of them. Keep reading for some interesting facts about stink bugs for kids to learn more about this smelly pest.

  • Some people describe stink bugs as smelling peppery like cilantro while others describe the smell to be like a skunk.
  • Stink bugs love to be warm. You can typically find them on the sunny side of your home or in windows. Stink bugs are secretly sun bathers.
  • Stink bugs like their smell! During the cooler months, stink bugs release a pheromone when they find a warm cozy spot that attracts other stink bugs.
  • Adult stink bugs can fly but younger stink bugs cannot.
  • Younger stink bugs are called nymphs. How do nymphs become bigger? By molting their skin. This is like taking off your clothes at the end of the day. They will molt their skin roughly five times before they become full grown.
  • Stink bugs are kind of like the skunks of the animal kingdom — they can release their smell to protect themselves.

  • Size: 3/4"
  • Shape: Triangular
  • Color: Brown, gray or dark green
  • Legs: 6
  • Wings: Yes
  • Antenna: Yes
  • Common Name: Stink bug
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Hemiptera
  • Family: Pentatomidae
  • Species: Halymorpha halys

What Do Stink Bugs Eat?:

Stink bugs eat leaves, flowers, fruit and crops like soybeans. They also eat other insects, such as caterpillars.

Where Do Stink Bugs Live?:

Stink bugs like to live outside near plans and trees. They typically live in orchards, gardens and farms. It’s when it gets cold, and they start crawling around your house to stay warm, that you have a problem.

Are Stink Bugs Dangerous?:

Stink bugs do not hurt humans, although they can be a little smelly. Stink bugs can cause a lot of damage to crops and plants. How? By eating them!

What Should I Do If I See a Stink Bug?:

If you see a stink bug in your house, don’t be afraid. Stink bugs don’t bite or harm people.

But they are annoying! So, if you see one, be sure to share these tips with a grown up in your house:

  • Seal any cracks or openings around your house.
  • Replace any damaged screens on doors and windows so they have no way to crawl in.
  • If you see a stink bug indoors vacuum them up and throw away the bag immediately. Don’t crush them!
  • Keep weeds around the garden in control and clean up the garden at the end of the growing season.
  • Hand pick stink bugs in early morning when they are slow moving. Stink bugs are tired in the morning just like we are!

Looking for more stink bug facts for kids? Find more information and learn about stink bug control at the official NPMA website.