Boxelder Bug Infestation

Beat Boxelder Bugs Infestation

Most commonly found feeding off the juices from a box elder tree, Boxelder bugs are easily identified by their red and black exterior.

The orange reddish markings on their back, with a flattened oval shaped body, make Boxelder bugs stand out among other fall pests.

Six legs and 2 antennae are two additional traits that make up the body of boxelder bugs.

How Does a Boxelder Bug Look?

Boxelder bugs are also fond of maple trees, among other plants.

Chicago has a high concentration of maple trees in the city and suburbs, which leads to many boxelder infestations in the fall months.

Boxelder populations can grow in massive numbers and invade homes and businesses, sometimes leaving fecal stains on surfaces as evidence.

Where Do Boxelder Bugs Come From?

Where Do Boxelder Bugs Come From?

Hibernating for the majority of winter months, Boxelder bugs start showing up when the weather warms.

Immediately after they've spent months in hibernation, Boxelders seek vegetation and seeds to feed as spring turns to summer.

Boxelder mating season begins after a couple of months spent feeding.

By the end of July, most Boxelders have finished their mating and begin their migration to boxelder trees.

Boxelder Bugs Nesting on Leaves

Laying their eggs on leaves, trunks, and branches of boxelder trees, the black and red bugs do so to ensure that their offspring will hatch in time for peak blooming on the trees.

Upon blooming, boxelder trees supply nymphs with reliable food through the deposit of seeds.

As the fall months roll in, homeowners and property managers will notice boxelder bugs swarming their homes and buildings.

How Do Boxelder Bugs Get In Your House?

Boxelders are especially attracted to solitary tall buildings, offering exposed areas that allow prolonged hibernation.

Buildings with western or southern sun exposure are at an increased risk, as boxelders seek prolonged sun coverage in the fall months.

How To Prevent Boxelder Bugs Infestations

As the fall months roll in, Boxelder bugs will begin to slip into homes and businesses with vulnerabilities to outside pest intrusions.

Preventing Boxelder Bug Infestations

Screens and windows provide the most common source of entry for all Boxelder bug infestations.

Boxelder bugs will be looking for any means of entry to avoid the cold months ahead and provide a warm, isolated area for prolonged hibernation that follows.

Maintaining a good seal and repair on any cracks around windows or holes in screens will ensure that your home has a fighting chance against infestations of all kinds.

Boxelder Bugs Inside House

If you have already uncovered a large number of boxelder bugs infesting your property, utilizing a vacuum will clean up the problem.

Many pest control professionals suggest utilizing a shop-vac to suck away your boxelder problem, though this may only be a temporary solution if a large scale infestation has already begun.

Spraying exterior walls outside the home with residual insecticides can also assist in the stoppage of boxelders over-wintering the property, especially if earlier prevention measures were not taken.

Boxelder Bug feeding on flower

Insecticide spray also works around window seals and baseboards in the home.

While this interior boxelder treatment will not prevent their entry, it can cause any lingering boxelders to die upon contact with the chemical.

Homeowners will also want to plug all cracks to foundation and roof, as these breaches allow mass entry to boxelders looking to spend their winter hibernation period in the comfort of a well heated structure.

What Attracts Boxelder Bugs?

Besides the boxelder's obvious attraction to a warm, sun filled structure for the fall through winter months, many other elements attract this pest.

Box Elder Tree

Feeding primarily on boxelder tree seeds and ripe leaves, boxelder bugs also sometimes feed on plum and apple tree fruit.

Having apple or plum trees may put homeowners and property managers at an increased risk of infestation if preventionary measures are not taken early.

Warm rocks and trees are also attractive destinations for these pests, seeking early shelter from the approaching brisk fall months that lead to cold Chicagoland winters.

Found throughout the Eastern portion of North America, Boxelder bugs are especially fond of the Chicago area due to the heavy abundance of maple trees.

The boxelder tree, actually a species of maple tree, natively found in the Chicago region, acts as a main attraction for migrating boxelder bugs looking for a place to breed their offspring.

Located throughout the Chicago suburbs on residential properties and public parks, this large tree typically resides in direct sunlight and can be as tall as 50 feet.

Owning a boxelder maple or being within close proximity makes your home or property a prime target for infestation in the fall to winter months, which are especially mild in Illinois.

Boxelders are able to fly up to 2 miles, so even if this tree doesn't exist on your property, a close proximity still poses a direct risk of infestation.

Tree stumps, standing debri piles, and other species of ash trees are all also attractive to boxelder bugs scouting their next move before fall hibernation.

Do Boxelder Bugs Cause Damage?

Despite being a big nuisance to homeowners, Boxelder bugs are typically considered to be a low risk pest in regards to damage caused and physical harm to humans.

While not known to bite, other than in rare defensive cases, boxelders often release an odor when smashed, which many find pungent and unpleasant.

Their feces has also been known to stain surfaces in the home, which also often acts as the first indication to their presence and infestation of the structure.

DIY Home Remedies For Boxelder Bugs Control and Prevention

Many homeowners believe that using moth balls will prevent or cure a boxelder infestation.

Unfortunately for practitioners of this DIY method, moth balls do little more than stink up your house in regards to pest control.

Boxelder bugs will be unaffected by the application of mothballs in areas suspected of infestation.

Save yourself the trouble and stick to the proven methods.

Other homeowners have a belief that soapy water will act as a repellent to invading droves of boxelder bugs.

Like mothballs, soapy water does little to deter migrating masses of boxelders, other than possibly drowning infant offspring.

Sticking to traditional pest control methods that are proven to prevent active or impending infestations from boxelder bugs will save time, energy, and money in the long run.

While no home remedy holds a magic fix for prevention, conventional methods of boxelder control are relatively simple and will also protect your home from other forms of pest infestation.

When To Call Starks Pest Control

With Over 10 years of hands on expertise in boxelder bug extermination, Starks Pest Control provides Chicagoland with extensive expert services that will end an infestation and prevent future intrusions, guaranteed.

Licensed and bonded, homeowners and property managers can rely on Starks Pest Control's proven track record of efficient boxelder extermination and prevention, coupled with amazing customer service.

We offer a free estimate, taking a full evaluation of the infestation and providing our clients with an idea of cost and duration needed to eradicate their pest problem.