Ladybugs, boxelders, kudzu bugs, and stink bugs Hiding In My walls

Bugs Hiding In My walls



Knoxville Pest Control, Boxelder Bugs

Boxelder Bugs

Knoxville Pest Control, Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

Knoxville Pest Control, kudzu bug

Kudzu Bug


          In the Knoxville area, ladybugs, boxelder bugs, brown marmorated stink bugs, and the new kudzu bug are overwintering pests many people have problems with.  Besides the annoyance and sometimes the smell, they are not a danger to us or our home as long as you do not kill them in the walls.
Knoxville Pest Control, Ladybugs

Ladybugs overwintering inside a wall. Picture by Anthony Boyle

Knoxville Pest Control, Ladybugs

Ladybugs overwintering inside a wall. Picture by Anthony Boyle

          Overwintering for insects is kinda like a bear hibernating for the winter.   The winter does not kill off all the insects like many of you would hope. If that were the case, they would not be here season after season. This is the natural life cycle.  With some, the entire population overwinters, some only the reproductives, and some only the eggs.  The monarch butterfly even migrates to warmer climates for the winter. The obvious reason for this is the cold temperature.  The other main reason is food availability.  Other species of food and prey are thinned and the plants and trees providing food are not blooming. So, they take a winter nap. Thanks to Anthony Boyle for the 2 pictures of ladybugs inside a wall.

Knoxville Pest Control, Light

Entry points

           Where do the pests like to overwinter?  Our homes are the perfect winter getaway and we make it so easy for them.  They love the cracks around windows, doors, behind gutters, between storage items, and behind siding especially at the edges that become their front door.  Nature also provides many hidden crack and crevices for them to hide in.

           It is 6 degrees outside and you are seeing stinkbugs on your walls inside.  Time to spray inside right? NO!!  “Do not apply insecticides indoors to control any overwintering pest. While insecticidal dust may kill bugs in wall voids, the carcasses can stink and attract other pests, such as carpet beetles, which can damage other things in your home. Applying an interior pesticide along baseboards won’t kill stink bugs nor will it keep them from emerging around the baseboards.” 
This also applies to all the other overwintering pests.

 Dermestid Beetles

Knoxville Pest Control, varied carpet beetle

Varied Carpet Beetle

           Dermestid beetles that are attracted to dead insects inside your wall are in the same family used by taxidermists to eat the flesh off of bones.  Once these are inside the walls of your home eating the bugs you killed, they are much worse than the overwintering pest that started this whole mess.  The varied carpet beetle can cause extensive damage to carpets, furniture, and clothing. It can also cause skin irritations.  


          Once the overwintering pest is inside our home it is too late to do much about it.  Most species set up shop right before the first frost and hang out until spring.  Depending on the holes inside you might see some stragglers in the winter but the most activity is usually seen when they are entering or exiting.  They prefer the side of the house the sun hits midday.  Once they leave in the spring, the control measures can be implemented.  Sealing all these holes and reducing excessive landscaping are your best defenses. I had a tree fall in the ice storm of 2015 which was a popular hangout for boxelders and kudzu bugs.  Since then there has been a massive reduction at my house. Treating the perimeter regularly, especially right before the cold hits can also prevent entry to any holes you cannot seal. You can’t seal them all but the more you do, the better. 
Knoxville pest control          The biology is the same but every house is unique and may require a professional to help prevent these pests.  Phoenix Pest Control has the knowledge and experience to make your bug life more comfortable.  Give us a call for a FREE diagnostic inspection. 
(865) 455-8571

Aaron Veal


  1. Aaron Veal on May 24, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    thank you

  2. Aaron Veal on May 24, 2017 at 5:39 pm