We have a large log home in the woods near Mt. Shasta, California. Every winter we get these nasty creepy crawlies, mostly in one room, the great room, which has a 24-foot beamed ceiling. The two wings of the home have attic spaces above them, but the great room does not. It is rare that we get bugs in any other room of the house. Can you tell us if aerosol "foggers" would help at all, and if so, what kind? We did put one in each attic space a couple of years ago and had only a couple of bugs that winter, but have not re-treated with foggers since and got many more bugs this recent winter. My husband is 79 and really not thrilled about crawling around in the attic spaces, but he could put foggers in each. He is NOT going up any ladders to try to treat the outside of the home, either! Strangely, we live in an area where there is nothing but oak trees and evergreens, and we have no garden whatsoever. WHAT are these bugs eating???? Thanks for your very complete info about these bugs – it is most informative and helpful!
If you read through our STINKBUG CONTROL ARTICLE, you'll learn this pest feeds on plants and trees. In regions where low lying vegetation is dominant, they'll choose the "easier to access" soft tissue shrubs and plants over less hospitable trees to feed. It's just easier for them to extract their food from ground cover plants when readily available. But they are quite capable of extracting their food from plant leaves and young limbs on most any tree and will do if plants and shrubs aren't readily available. Additionally they can fly and it's this mobility which will many times get them from a food supply to a good place to over winter as they can cover a lot of ground when need be. I suspect that might be the case with your log home stink bug problem.
As our article goes on to explain, stink bugs hibernate from year to year. They will naturally seek any humps, hills and mountainsides on which to hide and manmade structures fall into this "pre determined range" of likely spots they'll choose. Heated homes are even better suited for their needs during the cold of the winter and again, I suspect this is one of the main reasons your log home is being targeted. It's a vertical structure and if heated, exactly what they like. Stink bugs also like trees and since a lot home is made from trees, it only makes sense they will naturally be attracted to it. Unfortunately once your home is located by a few stink bugs and used over the course of just one winter, stink bug pheromones and scent will naturally accumulate. These odors will in turn lure more and more to the log home every fall as they like to over winter in groups. If left untreated the problem will naturally grow worse which it sounds like you're already seeing in the living space of your home. Additionally, the ones you're seeing are really just a symptom of the main problem; the main problem is you're allowing them access to the outside siding and attic space and inadvertently some are spilling out and over into the living space. My guess is for however many you are seeing inside there is 10 times as many (if not more) hibernating elsewhere in the attic and outer siding of the home.
Now in the article you'll also learn that to stop the invasion, you'll need to spray the outside every fall and spring with the CYPERMETHRIN we have listed in our article. This product is highly repellent to them and they'll avoid treated surfaces. In the spring, the emerging stink bugs which encounter the treatment will die thus diminishing the number that will return next fall.
Though we do carry FOGGERS that could be used in your attic spaces, clearly the DELTAMETHRIN DUST is better suited for the job and will provide much longer lasting results. The DUSTIN MIZER enables the applicator to cover vast areas without having to traverse the attic space and the dust will remain active for many pests the whole year so if you do anything up there, go with the Dust.
In the living space, treating cracks and crevices with PHANTOM AEROSOL will keep the stink bugs out of the rooms you use. Like most log homes, I'm sure you have several routes of entry into the living spaces and these should all be treated with the Phantom which is both low odor and easy to apply. Applications will last a month or more and if done every fall and spring, will greatly decrease the amount of stink bugs you see inside.
Here are direct links to the information and products mentioned above:
Stinkbug Control: http://www.bugspray.com/article/stinkbug.html
Deltamethrin Dust: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page1008.html
Dustin Mizer: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page1009.html
Phantom Aerosol http://www.bugspray.com/item/phantom_aerosol.html