Michigan brown marmorated stink bug report for July 28, 2015

No brown marmorated stink bugs have been found in traps in the monitoring network in the fourth week of trapping.

Distinguishing features of the adult brown marmorated stink bug include a distinct black and white banding along the margin of their abdomen, smooth “shoulders” and white bands on their dark antennae. Original photo by Jeff Wildonger, USDA-ARS-BIIR

Distinguishing features of the adult brown marmorated stink bug include a distinct black and white banding along the margin of their abdomen, smooth “shoulders” and white bands on their dark antennae. Original photo by Jeff Wildonger, USDA-ARS-BIIR

This is the fourth weekly report of the Michigan State University Extension brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) monitoring network. No BSMB were captured over the past week in any of the more than 60 traps set up near crops that would be favored by this pest. Our network of traps is being used to provide early warning should population increases of BMSB occur in areas where susceptible crops are grown.

Based on what is currently known about the biology of BMSB and its favored crop and non-crop habitats, commercial fruit and vegetable plantings have been selected that are adjacent to riparian habitats, woodland, soybean fields, major transportation corridors or various combinations of these attributes. Counties being monitored in 2015 are: Allegan, Antrim, Benzie, Berrien, Clare, Grand Traverse, Ingham, Ionia, Kent, Lapeer, Leelanau, Lenawee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Oceana, Ottawa and Van Buren. Traps are set up in apples, stone fruits (peaches, plums, sweet and tart cherries), blueberries, grapes, strawberries and a variety of vegetable crops. Several urban locations where BMSB were reported last year are also being monitored.

Brief history of BMSB in North America

BMSB are native to Asia and were first detected in Allentown, Pennsylvania, in 1996. From there they spread to the Mid-Atlantic States, first becoming a residential nuisance, then in 2006 becoming established as a serious agricultural pest, particularly in tree fruit. In Michigan, BMSB were first detected in fall 2010. Since then, they continue to be detected in low numbers, generally in association with manmade structures where they overwinter or in home gardens. There are a few known “hot-spots” in Michigan, most notably in southwest Michigan near Stevensville.

Distinguishing BMSB from native stink bug look-a-likes

Adult BMSB have several distinguishing features. They have a distinct black and white banding along the margin of their abdomen, smooth “shoulders” and white bands on their dark antennae (see photo). From head to wing tip, they are 15 millimeters long and 7 millimeters across the widest part of their back. Several of our native stink bugs can be confused with the brown marmorated stink bug, but resources like the second edition stink bug pocket ID guide published by Virginia Tech can help distinguish among some of the more common species. The 40-page guide is available for free to download and is titled: “Field Guide to Stink Bugs of Agricultural Importance in the Upper Southern Region and Mid-Atlantic States.”

To learn more about how to monitor for the brown marmorated stink bug, distinguish it from other similar-looking stink bugs, what crops it favors and management strategies should populations reach the threshold where management is necessary, visit MSU’s Brown Marmorated Stink Bug website.

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