Denver Bed Bugs: Zoology Object of the Week (March 28, 2011)

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Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius Linnaeus, 1758) are a growing problem in Denver and many other cities in the United States. Bed bugs do not transmit diseases but suck blood from people and, once established, multiply rapidly.

This sample was collected in October 2010 in a Denver apartment. The tenants did not inform the landlord early on about the infestation. Without professional treatment by an experienced exterminator bed bugs might make homes uninhabitable.

In a Science Bite released in April, and in an article in the June/July issue of the DMNS member magazine, Catalyst, Frank Krell provides more information about the bed bug problem. In addition, Colorado State University Extension has recently updated their bed bug fact sheet.

Update 20 July 2011: Research on the bed bug problem intensifies. Trapping them with baits seems to be a viable solution. See this interview with Prof. Coby Schal from North Carolina State University about his recently funded project to develop a baited trap.

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