Call today for a free quote!

Boxelder Bug


Actual Size: ½”

Characteristics: Flat and oval; black with reddish-orange markings on the back.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: Yes

Habitat: Boxelder bugs are drawn to areas in full sun, often on the sides of buildings.


  • When crushed, boxelder bugs emit an offensive odor.
  • The wings of boxelder bugs lay flat over their bodies, overlapping each other to form an ‘X’.
  • Boxelder bugs gather in the fall on the south side of trees, homes, and structures.
Boxelder Bug

Boxelder Bugs in Atlanta, GA

Boxelder bugs are classified as true insects that derive their name from the boxelder tree, a tree species widely planted across the United States. Typically, these insects feed on the leaves, flowers, and seed pods of the boxelder tree, with occasional sightings on maple and ash trees. In the autumn, they tend to gather in search of suitable overwintering locations, often causing a nuisance. Boxelder bugs will infiltrate homes for winter shelter and then reappear with the arrival of spring.

Boxelder Bug Habitat

During autumn, mature boxelder bugs gather on the sides of trees, rocks, and structures to bask in the sunlight. Once substantial clusters form, they often take flight towards adjacent buildings or other sheltered locations for winter hibernation. Seeking refuge within walls, boxelder bugs infiltrate homes and buildings, utilizing spaces within the structure for hibernation. While they do not reproduce indoors, these bugs gain entry through windows, doors, ceiling lights, soffit and dryer vents, outdoor faucets, and the siding of residential structures.

Boxelder Bug Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

Boxelder bugs are generally not known for biting, although there are occasional reports of defensive biting. These insects lack a stinging ability and are not associated with causing harm to homes and other structures. However, their droppings have the potential to leave stains on light colored surfaces. In the winter, boxelder bugs, either individually or in small groups, infiltrate homes and often end up flying into windows, bathtubs, and sinks. Their presence is frustrating, as they can blemish curtains, furniture, and clothing with their excrement. When crushed, boxelder bugs emit an unpleasant odor. They will eventually die, If confined within basements or homes. In the event of a boxelder bug infestation, it is recommended to seek the assistance of the professionals at Inspect-All Pest Services.