0221 Survivorship and growth potential of modern bed bug (Cimex lectularius) populations in the United States

Monday, December 14, 2009: 10:27 AM
Room 206, Second Floor (Convention Center)
Andrea Polanco , Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
Dini Miller , Department of Entomology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA
Carlyle C. Brewster , Department of Entomology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA
Little is known about the ecology, and growth potential of modern bed bug populations infesting the United States. Our knowledge of bed bug development time, egg production potential, and life span are based on scientific literature dating from the 1930’s where bed bug populations were collected under very different environmental conditions. For example, Johnson’s (1935-40) populations were collected over 80 years ago in Europe (and other Old World locations), where central heating did not yet exist. In addition, these populations were not documented as being insecticide resistant. Observations of bed bugs populations collected from current U.S. infestations indicate that the growth potential of these populations are significantly different from those recorded by Johnson (1935-40). This project evaluates the population dynamics of current Cimex lectularius infestations in the United States. A laboratory susceptible strain, and a field collected strain (documented as being pyrethroid resistant), were tested to determine the nymphal development time, adult life span, and egg production. These variables were incorporated into life tables to determine population growth potential. Preliminary results indicated that pyrethroid resistant bed bugs developed faster but produced fewer eggs than the susceptible strain bed bugs. Additional evaluations indicated that field strain bed bugs do not survive the long periods of starvation suggested by Johnson (1935-40). These studies suggest that the modern bed bug populations do not have the same population dynamics as those recorded in the 1930’s literature, and that referring to these older resources for information on modern populations may have limited use.

doi: 10.1603/ICE.2016.44657