Reports of tiny bugs infesting homes have been popping in several parts of the Central Valley. The insects have invaded homes in Davis, Sacramento and as far south as Atwater and Merced.
Some are calling it a "short-lived plague," and that’s because the bug invade then die.
"There were exterminators up and down the street,” said Davis local Joan Foley. “You name the company; they were here."
Just about everyone in Foley’s neighborhood on Kalamazoo Street witnessed the invasion, she said. Tiny insects crawled out of a vacant field, then covered homes and back patios in the neighborhood.
Foley says the worst is over but a remaining few can still be found crawling on furniture.
The question now? What are they and will they be back?
They are called false chinch bugs, said Lynn Kimsey, an entomologist at UC Davis.
“What’s happening now is conditions are perfect,” Kimsey said. “The weather and weeds were right and the population is huge."
When the population grows, so too does the bugs appetite, Kimsey said. The plants in the vacant field near Kalamazoo Street have dried up. The bugs are now looking for food in nearby lawns.
"There really isn't anything they can feed on in a lawn, so they just die out," Kimsey said.
However, the chinch bugs are resilient, Kimsey added.
Pesticides don't work well on the small bugs. Unfortunately in this scenario, Foley and her neighbors will just have to let nature take its course. Without food the bugs should die off in a few days.