Do Stink Bugs Fly?

One quick way to narrow down what type of bugs you’re dealing with is to know if they can fly. If the bugs in question are stink bugs, then the answer is yes, they do – stink bugs fly. But perhaps more interesting isn’t whether or not they can – stink bugs fly extremely well compared to other insects, yet the main reason they are so prevalent in the United States is because they are accomplished hitchhikers. Here’s more about the unique ways stink bugs get around.

Flying through the air

Stink bugs are known for emitting a foul odor, but in the entomological world, they are also known for their impressive flight capabilities. Stink bugs have been known to fly between one and three miles per day when the need occurs. On the ground, their strong wings fold up on their back, giving them their ‟shield-like” appearance. But when in flight, these wings help the stink bugs take advantage of wind currents to travel greater distances.

But even if the wind isn’t cooperating with the flight plan, stink bugs have powerful wings. When they get into your home, you might even hear them flapping their wings as they hover around lights. This noise can be intimidating, but it’s not as bad as their namesake – their smell.

Hitching a ride

Despite their long-range flight capabilities, stink bugs have infiltrated almost every state in the U.S. by hitchhiking along interstates and highways. Of course, they don’t have thumbs, so the stink bugs climb up into boxes and crates, which are then packed into trucks, trains and trailers. They also climb into the grooves of passenger cars, and are often found inside a locked car. Stink bugs are good at getting into human spaces, your house included. Luckily, they don’t reproduce or cause damage indoors, but they can leave a lingering odor that lets you know they were – or still are – there.

Keeping stink bugs out

Now that you know what they do – stink bugs fly or hitch rides to get around – learn how to defend yourself against these odoriferous invaders. Turn off all unnecessary lights at night. Stink bugs are attracted to lighting and will come in droves, especially on porches. Keep light fixtures away from doors and windows and take care when entering or exiting your home. Turn off interior and exterior lights near doors before opening them. Make sure all of your window screens fit correctly and are in good repair. Seal up any other points of entry you can find. Check any boxes or other items thoroughly before bringing them into your home. If you’re still having trouble with stink bugs, call Terminix® for a free pest estimate and let the professionals help you out of a stinky situation.