Brodie Owens looks at the back of her house and sighs. "This is the wall where we've noticed they're here. Even though you know they're not going to do you any harm, they're just gross."
"They" are boxelder bugs. And it's not your imagination, they're getting bad. Owens says, "You crawl into bed and they'd be crawling down the pillow and you're just like, ugh!"
And they're about to get even worse. Matt Ferguson works for Rainbow Pest Control. "This year they're really bad. April was warm early and come fall, they should be a really big problem this year."
According to entomologists, boxelders operate on a ten year cycle. From years seven to ten, they're most active, reproductively speaking. This is year eight, otherwise known as Brodie Owens' breaking point. "So we called them and they said they're dead within 20 minutes, so we're hoping they'll be gone."
The Owens are counting on an insecticide spray to give their critters the kibosh, but timing is key says Ferguson, "Anywhere from September 1st to mid October you get 85 percent control."
And if you don't catch them before the temperature drops, you risk inheriting uninvited house guests all winter. "Once the temperature drops below 40, it gives them that instinct, like I need to get inside. They'll follow the shadows on the house, a lot of times leading to a window or door frame. And a lot of times these aren't sealed very well and that's where they end up getting into the house," said Ferguson.
And just try, not noticing that, "It's just gross. I just want them gone!" says Brodie.
Unfortunately, the insecticide isn't sold "over the counter." It's called "Demand CS" and can only be used by licensed commercial sprayer.
By Amy Hockert, KARE 11 News
(Copyright 2006 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)