First, it's mosquitos, then the flies and noisy cicadas. Now, in all their splendor, we have reached the annual Boxelder Bug season in South Dakota.

Warm sunny fall days tend to awaken the little half-inch-long brown and black-winged pests. And they stay around for as long as Mother Nature provides comfortable temps as they look for a place to make their home for the winter.

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Along with the changing of the leaves and the Halloween decorations, one other sure sign that autumn is upon us is the red and black, six-legged visitors that seem to appear out of nowhere, crawling on the warm, sunny sides of buildings. Searching for the perfect place to overwinter, the Boisea trivittatus, are making themselves known.

So, what draws the Boxelder bug?

Boxelder trees. And I don't have any in my yard or the neighborhood. But the Boxelder tree is a maple. And I have plenty of those which are the primary food source for the namesake bug.

Adult boxelders can fly an average of about two blocks but have been known to travel for up to two miles.

Just walk out your front door to retrieve your mail. Come back in the house and, chances are you've picked up a few on your clothing as they fly around.

They don't bite, sting, or carry any diseases. They are just a pain in the @$$! You step on one and, they stink. Plus, they stain.

Good luck with getting rid of them. That could be a full-time job. One site offers a few tips, like spraying them with dish soap.

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