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In many situations heat is the best bed bug control option, but these treatments require specialized equipment, and a highly trained technician.

By Eric J. Braun | March 24, 2014 Bed bugs have long been a part of our world. One theory is that they emerged in prehistoric times, living in caves with our primitive ancestors, and then followed humans into man-made structures all over the world. In our era, bed bugs became a concern about 10 years ago as tourists staying at East Coast hotels began reporting bites. Because bed bugs are efficient “hitch- hikers,” these infested travelers inadvertently carried bed bugs to other hotels as well as into their homes. Today, there are reports of bed bugs on the East and West Coasts in America, and they are becoming more prominent in the Midwest. According to 2010 research conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) and the University of Kentucky, 95 percent of pest control companies reported encountering a bed bug infestation in the prior year. By contrast, before 2000, only 25 percent of pest control companies surveyed had encountered a bed bug infestation. Recently, the rate of increase in the spread of bed bugs has slowed. This is most likely due to an increased public awareness and the development of more effective control methods. However, the battle is ongoing because many strains of bed bugs have demonstrated a resistance to pesticides. Identifying an Infestation. While clutter in a room can provide bed bugs with safe and cozy hiding places, the cleanliness of a site has nothing to do with acquiring an infestation. Bed bugs feed primarily on blood and emerge from hiding places, usually at night, drawn out by body heat and by the CO2 we exhale. To date, they have not been shown to transmit disease, but can bite several times in one location and leave saliva in the wounds, which can cause raised welts that resemble mosquito bites or hives. Needless to say, these bites are at least uncomfortable, and the presence of bed bugs can psychologically impact people. Bed bugs typically are found in areas where humans have spent some time sleeping. Such areas might include the seams of mattresses, in box springs, headboards and in the tiny cracks of bed frames. They may also find harborage in the upholstery of chairs and other...

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[University Research] Bed Bug ‘Bug Bombs’ Busted!

Features – Special Report Research out of Ohio State finds foggers have “little, if any, adverse effects” on modern-day bed bugs due to the brief exposure times, their relatively low concentrations of pyrethrins and/or pyrethroids, and their lack of residual activity. “Even the Harlan strain , the long-term laboratory population that is susceptible to pyrethroids and that served as an internal control in these experiments, was unaffected if the bugs were covered by a thin cloth layer”. By Susan C. Jones and Joshua L. Bryant | October 17, 2012 For decades, “bug bombs” or “foggers” have been sold as over-the-counter (OTC) products for consumer use against many common household insects. Foggers act by broadcasting an insecticide mist using an aerosol propellant. These products are typically easy to use and require little effort to apply, making them a seemingly simple solution. Unfortunately consumers are often forced to revert to foggers as a low-cost alternative or as a supplement to professional pest control services. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently estimated that about 50 million foggers are used annually in the United States (http://1.usa.gov/S0pMMM). The name “bug bomb” seems rather fitting given that explosions have been reported when excessive numbers of foggers have been used or when a nearby ignition source, such as a pilot light, has remained on during fogging. Such explosions are newsmakers worldwide. Furthermore, foggers have been implicated in human injury and illnesses, often due to misuse of the products by consumers. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 466 cases of acute, pesticide-related illness or injury associated with exposure to total-release foggers in eight states between 2001 and 2006 (Wheeler et al. 2008). In an effort to minimize misuse of foggers, EPA required manufacturers to make a number of labeling changes by Sept. 30, 2011, to enhance clarity and to draw increased attention to critical information (http://1.usa.gov/S0pMMM). So…are these products effective against household insects? Many members of the pest management industry have expressed concern that foggers appear to be largely ineffective, particularly against crawling insects that are not on exposed surfaces. Furthermore, there is the general perception in the industry that foggers can actually make matters worse by causing insects to scatter from...

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Essential Oils Fail at Killing Bed Bugs

By GWEN PEARSON   Female of the bed bug – Cimex lectularius. Scale: bug length ~5 mm.  Gilles San Martin Consumers desperate to eradicate tiny domestic vampires have created a huge market for “natural” bed bug control. Sales are high, as are some of the claims; bogus bed bug products have prompted multiple Federal Trade Commission (FTC) actions for deceptive advertising. New research put 11 over-the-counter bed bug sprays to the test to see if essential oils can do more than make your bedroom smell nice. The results were… underwhelming. Potential of Essential Oil-Based Pesticides and Detergents for Bed Bug Control. 2014. N. Singh, C Wang, & R. Cooper. J. Econ. Entomol. 107(6); DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/EC14328 The products tested contained ingredients for an aromatherapy overdose: cedar, cinnamon, geraniol, clove oil, peppermint, rosemary, lemon grass oil, citronella, and others. Additional ingredients were soap (sodium lauryl sulfate, a foaming agent commonly found in shampoo); salts (potassium sorbate); and 2-Phenethyl propionate, which occurs naturally in peanuts. Most of the products failed a very simple test: if you sprayed the stuff directly on live bed bugs in a petri dish, would they die? Researchers measured bug deaths after 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10 days to make sure they captured any lingering effects. Two conventional pesticides were included for comparison purposes in the tests: Temprid SC and Demand CS.  There also were control bed bugs that got spritzed with water as a mock spray treatment. Seven of the natural products tested did not manage to kill even ½ (50%) of the bed bugs sprayed, measured by dead bugs 10 days later. Percentage of bed bugs that died within 10 days after treatment. Only the first two products killed most of the bed bugs–and that was when sprayed directly onto the bugs. Temprid SC is a conventional synthetic pesticide.  Singh et. al 2014 Only Temprid SC and EcoRaider killed 100% of the bugs when applied directly.  Although Temprid SC, a synthetic pesticide, killed 100% of the bed bugs on the first day,  only 88% of bedbugs in the EcoRaider tests had died by the 5th day.  None of the compounds tested acted as repellents to bed bugs in climb-up tests, where the bugs had to walk over a treated area. The second synthetic pesticide, Demand CS, performed poorly in these trials, probably because of resistance to pyrethroid insecticides in the bed bugs tested. It did, however, do better in residual tests; 14 days later Demand CS was still...

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Report: Common NSW bed bug has become insecticide resistant

By Tim Barlass 12/28/14                           Not picky: Head lice along with bedbugs are becoming tough to exterminate. Did you hear about the two bed bugs that met in the mattress? They were married in the spring. It’s an Ellen DeGeneres joke but if you have ever been a victim of cimex lectularius and rows of terrible itching bites you’ll know it’s no laughing matter. A new study to be published early in the new year conducted by the Department of Medical Entomology, Westmead Hospital and the University of Sydney reveals that the common bed bug in NSW has developed resistance to insecticides. Report co-author Cameron Webb, medical entomologist with University of Sydney and NSW Health Pathology, says bed bugs don’t discriminate about where they set up residence and that includes some top Sydney hotels. “It doesn’t matter to the bed bug whether it is a five star hotel or a backpacker’s hostel, they still arrive in people’s belongings and set up camp,” he said. “The financial implicat ions are far greater for the five star hotel. “We know there has been evidence of a resurgence in bed bugs over the last decade and this paper shows that the local Sydney strains are resistant to insecticides which explains that resurgence.” The research compared the Sydney strain to a strain susceptible to insecticides. The study found that to exterminate the Sydney bed bug compared to the susceptible strain it required 250 times as much of the insecticide bendiocarb, 370,000 times as much deltamethrin and 1,235 million times as much permethrin. It concluded: “The inability to control bed bugs with existing products and insecticides will necessitate a reconsideration of control methodologies and product registration processes employed against this resurgent pest. This research has significant operational implications for bed bug control and the registration process of new products in Australia.” Mr. Webb said a similar problem existed with head lice with reports that they are also gaining resistance to some of the commonly used insecticides but more research was needed. “When you are using products that contain an insecticide it provides an opportunity for insecticide resistance to develop inside the head lice populations,” he said. NSW Health advice is to put a conditioner on the hair...

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India School Lunch Deaths: Children Died From Ingesting Insecticide

By INDRAJIT SINGH 07/18/13 08:49 PM ET EDT View Article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/18/india-school-lunch-deaths_n_3615274.html PATNA, India — Soon after they served the lunch they had prepared for dozens of children at a rural Indian school, the two cooks realized something was very wrong. The students started fainting. Within hours, they began dying. By the second day after that fateful meal, 23 children between the ages of 5 and 12 had died from eating food laced with insecticide and many others had fallen ill. Authorities discovered a container of insecticide in the school’s cooking area next to the vegetable oil and mustard oil, but it wasn’t yet known if that container was the source, according to Amarjeet Sinha, a top official in the state of Bihar, where the tragedy took place. Some officials have said it appeared that the rice had somehow been tainted with insecticide and might not have been properly washed before it was cooked. “It’s not a case of food poisoning. It’s a case of poison in food in a large quantity, going by the instant deaths,” Sinha said Thursday. More answers were expected Friday, when a forensic laboratory was to issue the results of its tests on the dead children, the food and the uncooked grain stored by the principal in her house, he said. Police were searching for the principal, who fled after the students started falling sick, Sinha said. The cooks, Manju Devi and Pano Devi, told The Associated Press that the principal controlled the food for the free daily lunch provided by the government at the school. On Tuesday morning, she gave them rice, potatoes, soy and other ingredients needed to prepare the meal and then went about her business. As the children ate, they started fainting, the cooks said. The two cooks were not spared either. Manju Devi, 30, ate some of the food and fainted. Her three children, ages 5, 8 and 13, fell ill as well. All were in stable condition Thursday. While Pano Devi, 35, didn’t eat the tainted food, her three children did. Two of them died and the third, a 4-year-old daughter, was in the hospital. “I will stop cooking at the school,” she said. “I am so horrified that...

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Bed Bug Pesticide proven not to Work, AGAIN

REUTERS Thursday, July 18, 2013, 2:59 PM Chemical Free Solutions erroneously claimed its “Best Yet!” cedar oil products would get rid of bed bugs and lice. The company was fined $185,206 and its former owner was fined $4.6 million. Read Article:...

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