silver maple tree

There is actually a very simple way to figure out why boxelder bugs are targeting you and your home

Stand in your yard, and look around. If you see a boxelder tree, then that is pretty much why you're getting these little black bugs crawling all over everything. Boxelder bugs live and breed on boxelder trees. They can also be found on silver maple trees as well--feeding on the leaves, flowers, and seed pods.

You probably won't notice these bugs during the spring or summer, because they blend in well with the trees they feed on, but when fall comes, they will gather on the sun-warmed exterior walls of your home. And, as it gets colder, they will begin to slip into every nook, crack, and hole, to avoid the chill.

Boxelder bugs will overwinter in your walls to escape the cold, but if you keep your home warm enough, they will begin to explore the common areas of your house, instead of hibernating. Don't worry. They don't bite humans. But they can be quite a nuisance. Not only are they disgusting to have crawling all over everything in your house, they stain carpets, drapes, and furniture with their waste.

 
boxelder bug

How do you avoid a boxelder bug infestation?

To keep these bugs, and other bugs, out of your home, make sure you inspect all the screens on your doors and windows for rips or holes. Cover vents with screen, and cover your chimney with screen. Check your exterior walls, window frames, and foundation for cracks, and seal those cracks with caulk. And consider getting a professional to spray the outside of your home in spring or early fall. This will deter boxelder bugs from congregating on your home in the first place.

If you get them inside, use a vacuum with a long hose, to suck them up. Don't step on them, because they can stain whatever surface they are squished on.

If you get rid of the boxelder and silver maple trees in your yard, you will greatly reduce your chances of getting these bugs. That is assuming these trees are not in the woods near your home, or in a neighbors yard. The only other way is to have a professional treat your home. If you make your home unsavory to cling on, these bugs will look for another place to get warm. And no bugs, means no infestation.

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