Northwest berry Foundation

Management Detail

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

in Blueberries

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Latin name: Halyomorpha halys


First collected in this country in September of 1998 in Pennsylvania. Native to China, Japan, Korea and Taiwan where it is an agricultural pest. Since its arrival in this country the BMSB has become a serious pests of fruit, vegetables and farm crops in the Mid-Atlantic region. It has also been found outside that region, arriving in Oregon in 2004. It is now established in 15 states. Although some home gardeners have reported damage to beans, cucumbers, raspberries, and several species of ornamental plants, no commercial agricultural damage has been reported. BMSB is highly mobile and can switch hosts, moving from plants with early-ripening fruits to late-ripening fruits. It feeds by sucking on plant juices with its beak. Damage ranges from mild to severe. On fruit crops, its feeding results in small necrotic (dead) spots. Fruit damaged early in the season may have surface cat-facing (distorted brown lines or grooves). Later, the damage may allow infections and scarring.

Adults have the typical shield shape of other stink bugs. Approximately 5/8 inches long and 3/8 inches wide. They can be distinguished from other species of stink bugs by the light bands on the antennae. Eggs are light yellow to light green and laid in a cluster of 20-30 on the underside of leaves. The emerging young (nymphs) are have a tick-like appearance and are yellowish brown with black and red. Older nymphs are darker and look more like the adults. All nymphs have red eyes.

Adults begin looking for overwintering sites, houses and other protected places, in the fall (September-October). They emerge in the spring (May) and mate. Females begin to lay eggs in June to August. A single female can lay up to 400 eggs. Eggs hatch in three to seven days. During the first stage, the nymphs stay close to the egg cluster. Nymphs pass through five stages, with a molt in between, each about a week long. Number of generations depends on temperature, with the Mid-Atlantic states having one generation a year.



  • Survey for emerging adults starting in May while examining plants. 4 sites per 10 acres, 5 plants per site.
  • Start monitoring for nymphs and/or egg clusters in June. Eggs appear in groups of small white sphere attached to the underside of leaves. Nymphs are brown to black with orange banding on their rear half, and oval-shaped.
  • Look for fruit damage, or lesions.
  • Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is easily confused with the Rough Stink Bug which is not considered a major agricultural pest. Distinctive characteristics of the BMSB are a smooth flat shoulder, and antennae with two white to yellow colored bands on them.

Cultural Controls:

The only effective control for Box Elder Bug is the removal of host tree species (female Box Elder trees, Ash, and Maple predominantly). As damage from this insect is very rarely economic, it is generally unnecessary to do this.


For information about chemical controls, check with our Pesticide Guide.


Adult BMSB [photo J. Pond]

Adult BMSB [photo J. Pond]

BMSB on the left, Rough Stink Bug on the right [photo T. Peerbolt]


BMSB nymphs with egg cluster [photo G. Bernon, Ohio State University]


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