stink bug


variants or stinkbug
plural stink bugs or stinkbugs
: any of various hemipterous bugs (family Pentatomidae) that have a flattened, shield-shaped body with a triangular scutellum, emit a disagreeable odor when threatened, disturbed, or crushed, and include agricultural and household pests
The Maryland organic farmer is suffering from an infestation of stink bugs—crop-consuming pests emitting the odor of cilantro mixed with burned rubber and dirty socks.Heather Haddon
… Jay McPherson of nearby Southern Illinois University has recorded fifty kinds of stinkbugs from the Pine Hills; possibly the region now deserves the unenviable title of "Stinkbug Capital of the World."Robert H. Mohlenbrock

Examples of stink bug in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web While all spiders have some venom, the Joro spider poses a threat to whatever gets caught in its web — which can include butterflies, cockroaches, stink bugs and wasps — but not to humans. Alex Sundby, CBS News, 3 Nov. 2023 How to get rid of stink bugs The good news is stink bugs will not reproduce in your home, according to the EPA. Olivia Munson, USA TODAY, 24 Aug. 2023 Food attracts stink bugs in your house just like other pests. Hadley Mendelsohn, House Beautiful, 7 July 2023 Another way to keep stink bugs out is through preventative measures. Olivia Munson, USA TODAY, 24 Aug. 2023 Turn Off Your Lights at Night Like most insects, stink bugs are drawn to lights. Hadley Mendelsohn, House Beautiful, 7 July 2023 Do stink bugs bite? Stink bugs generally do not bite. Olivia Munson, USA TODAY, 27 June 2023 What’s more, this multi-purpose killer can be used on an array of other insects too, including ants, earwigs, household spiders, stink bugs, and even scorpions. Kat De Naoum, Better Homes & Gardens, 11 Apr. 2023 And squashing a stink bug can be a costly mistake, but a BugView in skilled hands can evacuate one without triggering its spray. Mike Pearl, New York Times, 4 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'stink bug.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1840, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of stink bug was in 1840

Dictionary Entries Near stink bug

Cite this Entry

“Stink bug.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


stink·​bug ˈstiŋk-ˌbəg How to pronounce stinkbug (audio)
: any of various true bugs that give off a bad smell
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