Presence of the invasive brown marmorated stink bug Halyomorpha halys (Stål) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) on home exteriors during the autumn dispersal period: Results generated by citizen scientists

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The invasive brown marmorated stink bug Halyomorpha halys (Stål) is a serious nuisance pest in buildings. To address how H. halys select potential overwintering sites and to predict the risk of home invasion, citizen scientists, primarily from the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S.A., were recruited to count the number of H. halys present on the exterior of their homes during the autumn dispersal periods in 2013 and 2014. Volunteers provided daily count data on numbers present on each exterior aspect of the home during the peak dispersal, as well as their home's location, colour and structural material. Among volunteers, fewer adults were counted on white homes compared with brown and tan homes in 2013 and with grey homes in both years. Across all homes, greatest numbers were counted on the north and east walls in both years and on homes with wood, cement or stone exteriors. In addition, significantly more adults were counted on homes in rural landscapes compared with urban areas in both years. Halyomorpha halys were found in greater numbers on darker coloured homes made of natural materials, even though these were less common than other types in the landscape. Thus, homes located in rural landscapes with these features could be prone to larger nuisance infestations of overwintering H. halys.

Brown marmorated stink bug, citizen science, nuisance pest, overwintering