Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center

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Visual Guide to Adult Stink Bugs

How to differentiate Brown Marmorated Stink Bug from other stink bugs found in Pacific Northwest orchards and surrounding areas

Disclaimer: The species descriptions used here are for a quick, rough determination and not intended as a definitive way to identify critical specimen. A much more thorough comparison of multiple features not included here would be required to confirm identification. The species shown here are limited to only the most common ones found in our area. Also, be aware that there are variations in size and color of each stink bug species depending on locality, time of year, age, and habitat in which the specimen is found. The specimen images shown here are sized proportionally for comparison. If you have a critical specimen requiring an authoritative identification you should contact the WSU Entomology Dept, your local County Extension office or the WSDA Entomologist or the equivalent in your area.

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Common Brown Stink Bugs Common Green Stink Bugs References

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB)

Hemiptera: Pentatomidea, Halymorpha halys Stål

AKA: yellow-brown stink bug; East Asian stink bug

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) is an invasive species native to eastern Asia where it is considered a major economic pest of soybeans and woody plants. Its presence in the US was first discovered in 2001 in Pennsylvania, more than likely originating from cargo shipments during the mid 1990's from the orient. BMSB has since spread down the eastern coast to Virginia and west with detections as far as California and Oregon. As in Asia, this pest is known to attack our high valued tree fruit crops as well as vegetables and small fruit. In urban areas this pest becomes a nuisance during the fall as it invades homes looking for warm over wintering sites. Disturbing this insect causes them to emit an odor from which their name arises.

For more information see the reference links at the bottom of this page.

Distribution:

Native to China, Japan, Korea and Taiwan. In the US, populations have established in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, South Carolina and Oregon (Portland metro area). Limited populations have also been detected in Mississippi, Ohio and California.

 

Key distinguishing features:

1 - Last two antennal segments have white bands.
2 - Shoulders (edges of thorax) are smooth.
General appearance: yellowish-brown color with mottling and cream colored spots on thorax and scutellum (shield); margins of abdomen have an alternating light-dark banded pattern.
For a more detailed species description including the immature stages visit the Forest Health Fact Sheet here or from link at the bottom of this page.

Specimen credit: D.B Short, Jefferson Co., West Virginia, USA; Image by: W. Jones, WSU-TFREC, Wenatchee, WA, USA.

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Common Brown Colored Stink Bugs Easily Confused for BMSB

Specimen credits: Research Collection, Washington Sate University, Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center, Wenatchee, WA, USA. Samples collected from North Central, Central or Columbia Basin area tree fruit orchards: Image by: W. Jones, WSU-TFREC, Wenatchee, WA, USA.

image of the Rough stink bug image of a male Consperse stink bug image of a female Conchuela stink bug

Rough Stink Bug

Brochymena quadripustulata Stål

Key distinguishing features (from BMSB):

The best way to distinguish this stink bug from BMSB is by looking at the last two antennal segments which are not banded (1); and from the appearance of the 'shoulders' (edges of thorax) which have teeth-like projections (2).

Consperse Stink Bug

Euschistus conspersus Uhler

Key distinguishing features (from BMSB):

This is a very common stink bug. Compared to BMSB it is smaller; the body is less mottled and lacks the cream colored spots; the wing membranes darker; and the antennae are tan to reddish with the end segments dark or black.

Conchuela Stink Bug

Chlorochroa ligata Say

Key distinguishing features (from BMSB):

The coloration of this stink bug can be highly variable from dark brown to light olive green. The most notable features are the black antennae, light colored body margin and a light spot at the end of the scutellum (shield).

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Common Green Colored Stink Bugs in Washington

Specimen credits: Research Collection, Washington Sate University, Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center, Wenatchee, WA, USA. Samples collected from North Central, Central or Columbia Basin area tree fruit orchards; Image by: W. Jones, WSU-TFREC, Wenatchee, WA, USA.

image of the green stink bug image of a female Red shoulder stink bug with the red thoracix band present image of a male red should stink bug with the red band absent

Green Stink Bug

Agrosternum hilare Say

Syn.: Chinavia hilaris

Key distinguishing features:

One of the larger stink bug species in the area. The color is usually bright green, but may become darker late in the season. The abdomen usually has an orange border. The last two antennal segments are darker then the first two, sometimes black.

(with red band)                                         (without red band)

Red Shoulder Stink Bug

Thyanta pallidovirens Stål

Key distinguishing features:

Coloration of this species can be highly variable. Body color can be bright green to a dark olive brown. A red band horizontally across the thorax may be present, but not always as shown here. However, it normally has a red margin on outer edge of the thorax and last antennal segments usually darker and redder than the first two. This is generally one of the smaller stink bugs.

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Reference Links

Pest Watch: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/FS079E/FS079E.pdf new

Pest Alert: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug. WSU Extension and WSDA
temporary link: downloads/bmsblIDsheet.pdf

Forest Health Fact Sheet- Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/forestry/leaflets/stinkbug.htm

E. Asian stink bug infesting homes in Allentown Pennsylvania, PA. Cornell Chronicle Nov. 1, 2001
http://www.news.cornell.edu/chronicle/01/11.1.01/stinkbugs.html

Rutgers Cooperative Extension Monitoring for the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://njaes.rutgers.edu/stinkbug/default.asp

Hamilton, G.C. and P.W. Shearer. 2003. Brown Marmorated Stink Bug- A New Exotic Insect in New Jersey. Rutgers Cooperative Extension. http://njaes.rutgers.edu/pubs/publication.asp?pid=fs002

PennState Entomological Notes: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://ento.psu.edu/extension/factsheets/brown-marmorated-stink-bug

Jacobs, S.B. and K. Bernhard. 2002. Yellow-Brown Stink Bug. Penn State Entomological Notes
http://www.ento.psu.edu/extension/factsheets/brownMarmoratedstinkbug.htm

Oregon Department of Agriculture Pest Alert: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/PLANT/docs/pdf/ippm_bmsb_alert2010.pdf

Northeast IPM Center Pest Alert: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
http://www.csrees.usda.gov/nea/pest/pdfs/stink_bug_pest_alert.pdf

Maryland Cooperative Extension: Pest Threats
http://pestthreats.umd.edu/content/documents/BMSBBulletin1_10-2010.pdf

Additional information on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug or stink bugs in general visit the reference links on our eNewsletter dedicated to BMSB.

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