Effects of juvenile hormone analog formulations on development and reproduction in the bed bug Cimex lectularius (Hemiptera: Cimicidae)


Kenneth F Haynes, Department of Entomology, S-225 Agricultural Science Center North, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, USA. E-mail: khaynes@uky.edu


BACKGROUND: Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius L.) have become a common insect pest in urban areas and are often difficult to manage. Eradication is made more problematic by widespread insecticide resistance, raising interest in alternative control products. Juvenile hormone analogs (JHAs) such as methoprene and hydroprene are relatively harmless to non-arthropods and have proved to be effective against other urban insect pests. Two JHA products (Gentrol® and Precor®, Central Life Sciences, Schaumburg, IL) were tested for efficacy against various bed bug stages as direct spray and as dry residue using three bed bug strains.

RESULTS: At 1× and 2× the label rate, Precor® [active ingredient (S)-methoprene] had no significant effect on the development or fecundity of bed bugs. At 2× the label rate, confinement to residues of Gentrol® [active ingredient (S)-hydroprene] had no significant effect, but residues at 3× and 10× the label rate caused a reduction in fecundity and impaired development. Field strains were more susceptible to the reproductive effects of (S)-hydroprene than a long-maintained laboratory strain.

CONCLUSIONS: While JHAs are attractive alternatives for pest management because of their inherent safety and distinct mode of action, these JHA formulations would have little impact on bed bug populations without relabeling to allow for higher application rates. Copyright © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry