A decade ago calls in our office for Asian Needle Ants, Bed Bugs, and Kudzu bugs were non-existent. These days, we’re finding all three in abundance. Asian needle ants are like fire ants on steroids except instead of building mounds they nest sporadically under rocks and throughout the landscape making homeowners more susceptible to encountering on of their highly toxic stings. I’ll save Bed Bug discussions for another blog post and elaborate more on the Asian Needle ant later, but for now, this blog post is to discuss the invasion of the Kudzu bug.

The Kudzu Bug is classified as an occasional invader. Similar in terms of being a general nuisance to that of box elder bugs, and lady bugs. They are proliferating here much like the namesake Kudzu vine. We first got a call about these in 2009 when a customer brought them in to the office for Patty to identify.  An insect most everyone here at Envirosafe had never encountered. Thanks to Paul Johnson at Clemson, we were able to identify this insect, which in 2009 was relatively rare. In 2010 we became well acquainted with the Kudzu Bug as calls increased exponentially about them.

Even my grandmother’s house was covered with Kudzu bugs that year (see photo above at her Gastonia NC Home). 2011 was the year of the Kudzu bug explosion though.  All summer we treated them and found out a repellent wettable powder (Demon WP) was the most effective treatment for Kudzu bugs.  The map below was published by the NPMA which is obviously flawed since we were getting calls apparently two years before they got the memo.

We just purchased a high powered microscope for positive identification of pest species. I’m looking forward to this year and discovering what new pests will be creeping into our customer’s homes.

-Rodney Allman

CIE, Envirosafe Environmental Services,

HomeSpectors Termite and Pest Control

1800 Camden Rd

Charlotte NC 28203

704-392-2241

www.pestcontrolcharlotte.net

Comments
  1. Michelle S Adams says:

    Have you any recommendations as to how I may REPEL these nasty little hellions? I rent an apartment and although the landlords sprayed the property for more common insects, I doubt they’ll do anything to kill this obscure bug. I happen to have the misfortune of living in the one building that is near a TON of kudzu!

    On a different note, I can share the BEST thing I’ve discovered thus far for removing the stench these nasty creatures leave. LEMON ESSENTIAL OIL (100% pure) is AMAZING! I have sensitive skin but am still able to apply it directly on my skin. However, you can also add a LOT of it to plain, fragrance free soap for an effect that works almost just as well. I have tried everything from tomatoes (I was thinking of skunks and how tomatoes get the smell out) to multiple soaps. As in hand soap, body wash, dishwashing detergent, shampoo, dishwashER detergent…moving on to laundry soap, carpet cleaner and even household cleaners (which I know is terrible, but desperate times call for desperate measures).

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