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Journal of economic entomology

Evaluation of the Potential for Secondary Kill for Ingested Insecticides in the Common Bed Bug (Hemiptera: Cimicidae).


PMID 28334348

Abstract

Baits are a preferred method of urban pest management. Baits enable more targeted insecticide applications with a fraction of the active ingredient used in residual sprays. Bait translocation by foragers, and consequent secondary kill of nonforagers, enhances bait effectiveness in social insects, and in other group-living species like German cockroaches (Blattella germanica L.). We investigated the potential for secondary kill in bed bugs (Cimex lectularius L.), another gregarious species, using a liquid bait. We first investigated whether blood-fed adults enhance nymph survivorship within aggregations by increasing the local relative humidity (RH) and providing fecal nutrients. Higher RH (50% and 95%) resulted in greater survivorship of first instars compared with 0% RH. Therefore, in subsequent experiments, we controlled RH to decouple its effect on nymph survivorship from effects of fecal nutrients. The presence of fed or unfed adults did not increase unfed first instar survivorship, suggesting that if nymphs ingested feces, its nutritional benefits were minimal. Nymph survivorship was unaffected by the presence of adult males fed fipronil or clothianidin, suggesting that unlike in cockroaches, highly effective insecticides might not be effective as secondary kill toxicants in bed bugs. To directly compare secondary kill in first-instar bed bugs and B. germanica, we exposed both to insecticide-laden adult B. germanica feces. Whereas first-instar B. germanica died in the presence of insecticide-laden feces, bed bugs did not. We, therefore, conclude that secondary kill with neuroactive insecticides will likely not be a significant factor in bed bug population suppression.

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