box elder bug up close

What do box elder bugs look like?

Box elder bugs have a unique appearance which makes them fairly easy to identify. They have an elongated oval-shaped body that is black in color. Their wings and thorax are outlined in an orange-red color. An adult box elder bug grows to about ½ of an inch in length. Nymphs (young box elder bugs) look like a smaller version of the adults, except they lack wings and are bright red in color.

boxelder bug in wood

Are box elder bugs dangerous?

Box elder bugs are not considered a dangerous pest. These insects spend most of their lives outside and away from people. Box elder bugs are not known to bite. However, if you are handling them their piercing mouthparts can puncture a person’s skin and create a slight skin irritation.

Will box elder bugs damage my house and property?

During the warm-weather seasons, box elder bugs are found outside in large numbers. As their name suggests, they infest and feed on the leaves, flowers, and seedpods of seed-bearing box elder trees. They will also feed on maple, ash, and cherry trees. Except in the case of a very large infestation, their feeding habits rarely cause significant damage to the trees they are feeding on.

Box elder bugs that find their way into homes have the potential to stain walls, furniture, curtains, and other surfaces with their excrement. In addition, when crushed, they can leave behind an unpleasant odor inside a home.

Why do I have a box elder bug problem?

In the late fall, when the weather becomes cooler, box elder bugs will congregate on the warm sunny sides of homes and other buildings. As they move up exterior walls, they can find their way inside through cracks and crevices. Once inside they can move throughout your home, hiding together in quiet out-of-the-way places like attics, wall voids, crawl spaces, and underneath floors. In the spring, when the weather warms, box elder bugs will emerge from their overwintering spots and travel back outside to feed and breed.

How do I get rid of box elder bugs?

To take care of a box elder bug infestation completely, contact the pest control professionals at All Pest Control & Solutions. Serving Salem and the New River Valley areas, our professionals inspect properties, develop a plan of action, and then implement! The end result, 100% satisfaction guaranteed box elder bug control for your property.

Does All Pest Control have box elder bug prevention tips?

Preventing box elder bugs from getting into your home can be difficult, but there are a few things you can do to help deter these household invading pests.

  • Cut back trees, especially box elder trees, from the exterior of your home.
  • Seal entry points in the foundation, exterior walls, and roofline of your home.
  • Fill in the spaces around wires, pipes, and utilities entering your home.
  • Put mesh covers over vents leading into your home.
  • Place tight-fitting caps on all chimneys.
  • Put weather stripping around all exterior windows and doors.

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