Fall Swarming Insects

from Wildlife Promise

Fall
is here!  October is the season of warm days, cool nights and beautiful
foliage.  It’s also the time of year that many insect species begin to seek
shelter from the oncoming cold.  These insects normally find such shelter in
hollow trees, rock crevices and under fallen woody debris—but for some species
your home can serve as a nice substitute.  Here are two likely insect species
that might come knocking this fall, both of which are invasive
exotics.


Asian Ladybird Beetle, Doctor Swan/FlickrAsian Ladybird Beetle
The Asian ladybird beetle (a kind
of ladybug) was introduced multiple times in multiple places in the U.S. to help
control crop pests as well as accidentally from Japanese ships that docked in
Louisana ports.  Most ladybug species gobble aphids and other soft-bodied plant
pests and are considered beneficial insects.  Unfortunately, this species is so
voracious it has out-competed and even eaten several
native ladybird beetle species into rarity
, and has become a household pest
when it swarms indoors as the weather turns cold.


Brown Marmorted Stink Bug Flickr Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
This shield-shaped insect
is a fairly recent import.  First documented in Allentown, PA a decade ago, the
brown marmorated stink bug has rapidly spread
throughout the Mid-Atlantic states
.  In its native range in Asia it is a
crop pest, although so far here in North America its biggest impact has been on
ornamental plants and as indoor nuisance in the fall and winter.  If you live in
this region, as I do, you’ll know from experience that this new invader is
everywhere right now!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/anitagould/ / CC BY-NC 2.0