Box Elder Bugs

Facts, Identification & Control

Latin Name

Boisea trivittata


The bodies of box elder bugs are black in color and are marked by red lines along the thorax and sides. Their wings are flat and red. Box elder bugs measure between 11 to 14 mm long.

Behavior, Diet & Habits

Box elder bugs inhabit maples and ashes, and seed-bearing box elder trees, in warm seasons. In winter, they can be found in interior areas such as houses.

Box elder bugs feed on soft plant tissues, such as leaves and flowers.


The rust-red eggs of the box elder bug are laid on host trees. Nymphs hatch, feed and undergo a series of molts until they become adults.

Signs of a Box Elder Bug Infestation

Like many overwintering pests, the most startling sign is the bugs when they invade in staggering numbers. They usually appear on sunny sides of buildings in the fall. They invade the voids of the building to overwinter. While overwintering, they do not feed or reproduce.


Box Elder Bug Life Cycle

Box Elder Bug Control

Nest of Box Elder Bugs