If you’ve been seeing large numbers of box elder bugs in your home, it is most likely that you are already dealing with an infestation. Though it might be tempting to immediately call for an expert, there are things that you can do to get rid of boxelder bugs. Some of these are the following:
1. Wear Protective Gear
Though these bugs aren’t dangerous, you might need to wear a protective if you’re planning to use insecticides. Since you are going to work using chemicals, it is recommended that you wear a dust mask, protective goggles, and heavy-duty gloves. Wear pants and long sleeves to avoid any health risks as you try to kill the bugs.
Even if you find a product that is not harmful to humans or animals, it is still necessary that you take extra precautions. This way, you can avoid any health risks as you try to deal with a bug infestation.
2. Target large swarms by using food-grade diatomaceous earth
Before you opt for dangerous and toxic chemicals, it is recommended that you go for a safer option. A food-grade DE can be used around your home and around the base of box elder trees and maple trees.
Make sure that you re-apply the powder on the same places to keep them from entering your home. Apply the powder generously around windows and doorways.
3. Use insecticide for bugs swarming outside your home
These bugs usually release a certain chemical attracting other bugs, which creates large swarms. One way to get rid of these swarms is to use insecticides to kill boxelders outside your home. Make sure you follow the instructions.
You can also use a residual insecticide in this process. The residual effects make it impossible for the bugs to keep entering, as the residue will still work to kill them. Always keep your pets and children away when spraying visible bugs and their hiding spots.
4. Vacuum them up
One easy and quick way to remove these bugs is by vacuuming them up in groups. Once you make sure that you caught them all, empty the bag in a garbage bag, seal it, and throw it away. This will prevent them from escaping and spreading again.
5. Use a duct tape
You can always use this alternative to keep them from flying and throw them easily. The bugs will stick to the tape and will make capturing and disposal easier.
6. Pick them up
Another easy alternative is by simply picking them up and throwing them away. Though this is definitely labour-intensive, it can be your go-to especially if you don’t have a vacuum ready. You can also opt for this is you are only seeing a few of the bugs inside your home.
7. Sweep them
If you can’t pick them up, you can simply sweep them away. Put them in a garbage bag and throw them away.
This method may seem simple, but it is still risky. The bugs might re-enter your home and still cause an infestation. So, make sure you do it properly and not a single bug comes back.
8. Use soapy water mixture
You can make this by mixing dish soap or laundry soap with water. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and apply it directly to visible bugs in your home. You can still use this mixture in case another infestation happens.
It is important that you added an infestation immediately as these bugs would keep on getting inside your home to seek shelter during winter. Aside from learning how to get rid of them, it is also essential that you know what attracts them in your home.
How to Avoid Another Infestation
The most common reason why they keep going through every crack and crevice in your home is the warmth they get during the winter season. Another reason is the availability of food sources in your property.
As long as there are host trees in your property, especially female boxelder trees, they will keep on returning. They usually eat the seed pods from these boxelder trees and it is where they also lay eggs.The best thing you can do to avoid another infestation is by removing these trees permanently. If you still want to plant these trees, it is ideal that you go for the male trees. This way, you can still grow these trees without attracting the bugs.