Cleveland — Stinkbugs.
They're everywhere. How many of you reading this right now have already found one today?
Those flat backed almost "prehistoric" looking pests that keep popping up.
What’s up with all the stinkbugs?
Plenty of us here at Channel 3 News have seen one too many at home as well so we set out to get some answers.
You see a stinkbug and think how to get rid of it.
When Case Western Reserve University Entomology Professor Mark Willis sees one, “I just recognize it as someone I know."
Willis explains with pride, “I’m a bug guy”.
He's our bug guy now and helped clear up some of your questions about stinkbugs.
"The stink is defensive chemicals that they make to keep predators from wanting to eat them or any time they feel threatened. And of course they feel particularly threatened if you smash them," Willis laughs.
That’s why Shelly Steinmetz of Chesterland opts to flush them.
“Girl. I flush like 7-8 stinkbugs a day. It’s unreal how many we find in our house,” Steinmetz wrote after sending a video of the latest flush.
Another viewer, Denise Zervos of Mentor, said stinkbugs are invading their space at home too. Another one in her words, just “took a ride down the porcelain tidal wave”.
Of course our bugman Professor Willis takes a different approach.
"I am the designated bug ejector at my house and all insects leave alive," Willis says.
So how does one without that affinity for stinkbugs go about disposing of them?
"Some people think vacuuming them up is a really cool idea. Then you just have a smelly stinkbug in your vacuum cleaner," Willis points out.
So straight from our new bug lover friend, a self-proclaimed "bug ejector", it's as simple as this.
Willis explains that usually the stinkbugs are on a flat surface.
What Willis does is “Just take a glass, place it over the stinkbug, slide a piece of paper or postcard under the bug. Now you have the bug in the glass and walk over, open the door and toss them out."
But even the lover of bugs himself says stinkbug smashers need not feel bad. "The number one business stink bugs are in is making more stinkbugs," explains the professor.
When are you most likely to see them in your house?
"In the fall. When it gets cold outside they don't like it and want to get warm. Then we find them on the window screens at the end of winter when they're trying to get out.
How to keep them out is the specialty of the bug man's better half.
"My wife is the queen of caulk. Making sure our house is as weather tight as possible and that just keeps these guys out. And come to think of it, we have had noticeably fewer stinkbugs in the recent years when we have weather proofed," Willis says.