Look-Alike Insects

Additional Resources

Several insects look similar to brown marmorated stink bug, including:


Brown Stink Bug

You might confuse brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) with native, brown stink bugs of the genus Euschistus. An easy way to distinguish BMSB from native browns is to look at the underside of the insect. BMSB has a brown-gray underside; brown stink bugs, native to North America, have a yellowish-green underside.

Brown Stink Bug

Brown stink bug, Euschistus servus, from above. Photo by Russ Ottens, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org

Brown stink bug, Euschistus servus, underside looks yellowish-green. Photo by Herb Pilcher, USDA-ARS, Bugwood.org

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

BMSB adult male from above. Photo by W. Hershberger
 

BMSB underside appears brown-gray. Photo by Susan Ellis, Bugwood.org



Spined Soldier Bug

You can distinguish the spined soldier bug, Podisus maculiventris (Say), from BMSB by looking at the shoulder angles. The spined soldier bug has sharp, acute angles at the shoulders compared to BMSB, which has more rounded, obtuse angles. The spined soldier bug has a shorter and thicker first segment of the proboscis (the long nose-like extension from the bug's face) compared to BMSB. Often, spined soldier bug has more reddish antennae compared to BMSB, which has black and white antennae, but these details can be difficult to distinguish without comparing the two insects side-by-side.

Photos by Brent Short, USDA ARS AFRS.



Dusky Stink Bug

The dusky stink bug, Euschistus tristigmus (Say), is generally smaller than BMSB. Dusky stink bugs also have pointed shoulders, similar to the spined soldier bug.

Photos by Brent Short, USDA ARS AFRS.



Rough Stink Bug

The rough stink bug, Brochymena quadripustulata, has a small point or "tooth" on each side of the face. BMSB does not have this marker. Also look at the shoulder area, just behind the head. Rough stink bugs have a small row of spines or "teeth," whereas BMSB is fairly smooth. On many rough stink bug specimens, the abdomen fans out on the sides so that it is more visible from the top when the wings are at rest than on BMSB. The rough stink bug is generally a more uniform dark gray or nearly black color.

Photos by Brent Short, USDA ARS AFRS.



Don't Be Fooled

Other species that look similar to BMSB include:

This web page from Rutgers University shows how to distinguish BMSB from these species.



Additional Resources

Stink bugs (Pentatomidae) and parent bugs (Acanthosomatidae) of Ontario and adjacent areas: A key to species and a review of the fauna: This website features identification keys to distinguish stink bugs by their species. Also available as a PDF file [29 MB].