Boxelder bugs are found wherever boxelder
trees (Acer negundo) occur. They are found on or in close association with seed-bearing,
female boxelder trees. The
adult is 1/2" in length and the black and red
cross pattern on its back makes this insect easy to distinguish from related
species (stink bug and milkweed bug). They move to structures in the fall
seeking hibernation sites in buildings (cracks, crevices, attics, under
shingles, etc.). When a boxelder bug becomes active in the spring it will
often find its way into your house or apartment. They cause no harm other
than occasional spotting of windows and curtains.
insecticides in the dwelling is not usually necessary.
Expeditious use of a fly swatter or removal using a paper towel will get
the job done. For long term control you must deny access to your home.
Careful inspection of your home to determine points of entry and repair
of these areas is necessary. A second alternative is to remove seed-bearing,
female boxelder trees.