Stink bugs on the move a growing nuisance in NC

In this Thursday, April 14, 2011, shown is a brown marmorated stink bug at a Penn State research station in Biglerville, Pa. The relatively new pest originally from Asia is threatening to wreak havoc on mid-Atlantic orchards. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

June 19, 2011 8:36:14 AM PDT
What's that smell? It could be the latest in foreign-born pests to make themselves a nuisance to North Carolina residents.

The stink bug, an import from Asia, was first spotted in Pennsylvania in 1998. Pest management companies In North Carolina say they're getting a growing number of calls about the insects.

The bug gets its name from the foul odor it emits when crushed. Harmless to humans, it's caused millions of dollars in damages to fruit and vegetable crops around the country.

Entomologist Lee Smith says the bugs are new to the area, so professionals are still learning how to handle them.

The North Carolina Pest Management Association says the bugs can be vacuumed, but that people should call a professional in the event of an infestation.

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