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Posted on: June 28, 2019

Elm Seed Bugs Becoming a Pest in Colorado

This insect feeds primarily on elm seeds, but has also been reported on linden and oak trees in Utah. Elm seed bug adults become a major nuisance pest, similar to the boxelder bug, by entering homes and buildings in great numbers.

Unlike boxelder bugs which appear in homes in the fall, the elm seed bugs most often appear in homes from mid-June through September and may become active in homes during the winter if temperatures are favorable outside. Adults will overwinter in structures, but do not reproduce in the home. When spring arrives they will venture out from overwintering sites to feed on developing elm seeds. The elm seed bugs are a further nuisance because they can produce a pungent odor similar to bitter almonds from abdominal scent glands.  The best way to remove them from inside the home is to vacuum them.  

For more information, see the Colorado State University Extension Office Fact Sheet:  https://extension.colostate.edu/docs/pubs/insect/05619.pdf.

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