Mao’s revenge or where did the stink bug come from?


Stink-bugBy Bill Derby

We’re all familiar with Montezuma’s Revenge but I think Mao Tse-Tung, father of the Chinese revolution, has earned credit for the invading Chinese stink bug. We could call it, Mao’s Revenge.

The pesky little crawling, flying and stinking little insects are now showing up around town, in our offices, houses, pup tents or anyplace where it can keep warm. Early fall is the time of year these crawly creatures start showing up.

America had its own little stink bug who rarely showed its face but has been replaced by the big-butted Chinese stink bug which migrated from China a number of years ago, probably during Mao’s reign of terror.  Mao, whom I discovered had a very checkered and disturbing past, could have put a couple of thousand stink bugs in China’s first load of container ship boxes marked ‘Chinese Checkers’ headed to America. The stink bug has now made its way across our land.

I just swatted one crawling up my office wall with last week’s News & Neighbor. Dang, I hate to get stink bug guts on my column.

Experts say the little boogers release an unpleasant odor when threatened. Knowing this, I always try to sneak up from behind to administer the coup de’gras or, in some cases, a quick squish with a couple sheets of Charmin quickly flushed in the nearest potty.

Entomologist say the stink bug’s stink and aroma is not unlike the strong odor of herbs and spices like cilantro and coriander. It stands to reason if your house is smelling herbish or outdoorsy, it’s a good guess you have thousands of frightened stink bugs hiding in dark places. There is no known repellant or good way to keep the insects out of your house unless you plug every itty, bitty little crack or crevice around your home. It’s almost impossible.

Some of the bugs can even squirt their stink. These squirters have also been known to eat their brothers and sisters and in some cases eat other harmful insects.

Also, there are no known predators to dine on stink bugs.  The real name for this bug is – the brown marmorated (having a marbled or streaked appearance) stink bug. Without anything to eat this pest the stink bug population has slowly grown and the experts aren’t sure how it’s going to spread.

There is a solution, literally, and this is true.  A very effective weapon sits on your kitchen sink right at your fingertips and instead of wasting a sheet or two of Charmin or last week’s newspaper, a prepared squirt of diluted Dawn dishwashing liquid and water will kill the insect almost immediately.  Instead of sneaking up behind this creepy crawler you can now shoot it right between the eyes.

Wait, there’s one over my head on the ceiling this very second. I swear.

It must be reading this column over my shoulder.  Swat…….!

I’m back and it’s number two for the day with the N&N. Tomorrow, I will have a squirt bottle of 1/3 Dawn and 2/3rds water for protection.  Proctor & Gamble should note this on their bottles of Dawn—“Can be used to kill Mao’s Revenge!”

Most times bugs don’t bother me but I don’t like the way this marmorated stink bug looks sneaking around on my office walls squirting up the place with cilantro or coriander.

I may have to change the color of my office to a blue or green—a nice dishwashing shade.


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