The Monitor Daily (U.S.) – Bedbugs are no longer affected by commonly used insecticides according to a new study from the New Mexico State University and Virginia Tech. The pests are becoming increasingly tolerant to substances which used to do away with them easily.
These substances, commonly used insecticides used to be powerful weapons against bedbugs. Horrific bedbug infestations occurred in recent years from Los Angeles to New York hotels. The itch-causing and at times disease carrying critters are now even more difficult to exterminate. With enormous sums of money invested in eradicating bedbug infestations, the study could offer insight on new ways to tackle possible bedbug infestations.
The increased resistance to commonly used insecticides is pinpointed to overuse. The more exposure to chemical compounds in the insecticides the bedbugs suffered, the more resistant they became. Troy Anderson with the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences declared that while everyone is looking for the most powerful tool against bedbug infestations:
“what we are using as a chemical intervention is not working as effectively as it was designed and, in turn, people are spending a lot of money on products that aren’t working”.
Alvaro Romero and Troy Anderson, lead authors of the study, examined the impact of the commonly used insecticides known as neonicotinoids on bedbugs collected from different settings. Typically, in order to do away with bedbugs, neonicotinoids are coupled with pyrethroids in commercial products. The authors of the study are cautioning that companies producing commercial insecticides observe the performance of the products based on neonicotinoids.
Published in the Journal of Medical Entomology on Thursday, the study looked at three bedbugs populations and how they reacted to commonly used insecticides.
Bedbugs are no longer affected by commonly used insecticides as per the findings of this study. Part of the bedbugs had been collected from homes in Michigan and Cincinnati and had been exposed to neonicotinoids-based products. A second bedbugs population was collected in 2008 from New Jersey and hadn’t been exposed to neonicotinoid since then. The last group of bedbugs has been isolated in a laboratory harbored by the Armed Forced Pest Management Board and led by Harold Harlan.
The latter group took very little to do away with. Only 0.3 nanograms of the neonicotinoids were necessary to kill 50 percent of the bedbugs. As for the Michigan and Cincinnati bedbugs, it took 10,000 nanograms to kill 50 percent of the population. The neonicotinoid substance used in this case was acetamiprid.
When experimenting with another neonicotinoid substance called imidacloprid, the researchers found that 2.3 nanograms were sufficient to kill 50 percent of the laboratory bedbugs. The Cincinnati bedbugs took 365 nanograms, while the Michigan bedbugs took 1,064 nanograms to kill 50 percent of the bedbugs population.
Photo Credits: Wikimedia