AUGUSTA — Maine forestry officials say they have received several calls this fall about swarms of a potentially bothersome bug that congregates in large numbers.

The pest in question is the boxelder bug, which feeds on leaves, flowers and seed pods of boxelder trees and other maples. The state says the bugs are considered pests because of the large numbers they gather in when trying to access homes and buildings in the fall.

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry say the bugs don’t produce a smell and don’t damage wood, cloth, humans or pets. They’re mostly just a nuisance because of the big groups they congregate in this time of year.

The boxelder bugs are also pests in spring when they are trying to get out of homes and buildings.

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