How To Keep Box Elder Bugs Away From Your Denver Property

Box Elder Bug crawling in a home.

If you love the outdoor life, you might think we’ve got it made here in Colorado – and you’d be right. From skiing to hiking to mountaineering to whitewater rafting, you’ll never run out of things to do outside around Denver. One of the best things to do in our state is to enjoy the fall colors. Unfortunately, along with the annual explosion of golden aspen foliage comes an explosion of a different sort – the box elder bug invasion. These bugs have no problem spending their time outside during the summer. But as the days get shorter and the nights get colder, you might notice them encroaching on your home, trying to find a warm place to ride out the frigid Colorado winter.

How To Identify A Box Elder Bug

Box elder bugs are kind of pretty when they stay outside. They’re jet black, with long antennae, and bright red or orange stripes on their wings. They get their name because they like to feed on the seeds and tender, new leaves of the box elder tree. They can also feed on other trees like plum, maple, ash, and apple, though usually, the only tree where you might notice feeding injury is the box elder itself.

As far as pests go, box elder bugs are on the less-destructive end of the spectrum. They don’t bite, nor do they carry any diseases, and they don’t really damage your property – unless you’ve got box elder trees in your yard. However, these bugs can invade your home in droves, staining your furniture and carpet with their secretions. What’s more, as a relative of the stinkbug, these insects don’t exactly smell like a bed of roses, especially not when you squish them. If they invade, they can be a serious nuisance, crawling all over everything and congregating in cracks and crevices in your walls to insulate from the cold.

Five Easy Tricks to Prevent Box Elder Bugs

The best way to deter box elder bugs is to put up physical barriers to your home. They can get pretty creative when trying to gain access, so this is easier said than done. Just remember to take all your preventative measures before the beginning of fall, when huge clusters of box elder bugs start trying to migrate indoors. Here are five prevention tricks:

  1. Repair or replace damaged window screens. Don’t leave unscreened windows open – not even a crack.
  2. Use caulk or foam to seal up any areas where wires or pipes enter your homes, such as phone lines, cable or internet cords, or outdoor faucets. Just make sure you’re using a sealant intended for this purpose.
  3. Install pest screens over soffit vents, condensation outlets, and any other legitimate hole in your home’s exterior.
  4. Fix any cracks or holes due to damage in your walls, siding, foundation, or any apparent entry point.
  5. Remove or trim any Box Elder trees on your property

Getting Rid Of Box Elder Bugs

Even with these measures, the sneaky, determined box elder bug might still find its way into your home. It’s simply too hard to seal up every entry point they can access. If that happens, there are a few pesticides you can spray, but the sheer volume of individual bugs makes it tough to kill them all. Further, if you kill the bugs but can’t remove the carcasses (like if they’re all wedged in between bricks or inside cracks), you’re risking attracting other pests that scavenge on dead insects.

The best thing to do is call the professionals. Here at Beeline Pest Control, our certified technicians are standing at the ready to help you get rid of these annoying pests. Our quarterly pest control programs ensure your property is protected from a whole host of pests year-round – not just box elder bugs. If you’re ready to give this irritating swarm the boot, call Beeline Pest Control or schedule your service through our contact page, and we’ll make a beeline for your home or business.

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