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Blood-loving bed bugs prefer special favorite colors

Blood-loving bed bugs prefer special favorite colors


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House bugs love red and loathe green
Bed bugs are extremely uncomfortable for people. The bloodsuckers prefer to nest in the bedroom. Because people are regularly there. A new study showed that bedbugs prefer certain colors of bedding. So avoiding some colors and using other colors could be good health care. The study was presented to the Journal of Medical Entomology.

Parasites nest near their host
The so-called "bed bugs" (also called "house bugs") are nocturnal, flightless parasites that feed primarily on human blood. Therefore, they live where their landlord regularly stays for a long time: in the bedroom. The most popular place is the bed, but next to that serve e.g. protruding wallpaper corners, baseboards or light switches are ideal hiding places. But do colors also play a role? Scientists from the USA asked themselves this question and came to interesting results in search of possible favorite bed bug colors.

For their study, the researchers had made small cardboard hideouts for the animals and designed them in different colors. The colorful constructs were evenly distributed in petri dishes and a bug was placed in the center of each dish. The researchers gave the parasites ten minutes to choose one of the colored hostels. It turns out that the insects prefer to seek protection behind red and black. Green and yellow hiding places, on the other hand, were less in demand, according to the scientists from the University of Florida and Union College in Lincoln.

Bedbugs seek the closeness of their peers
They then varied the experimental setup, for example by comparing the behavior of female and male animals or that of hungry versus full bed bugs. The researchers recognized that the color preferences differed depending on the initial situation and e.g. Individuals preferred different colors than those who were part of a group.

"We first thought that the bed bugs might prefer red because blood is red and that's what they feed on," said Dr. Corraine McNeill, according to a press release from the Entomological Society of America. “But after the end of the study, we think that they prefer to choose red because bed bugs themselves appear red. They are looking for these hiding places to be close to other bugs, as they are known to live in larger clusters, ”continues co-author McNeill. The fact that yellow and green hiding places are avoided is probably due to the similarity to brightly lit areas.

Knowledge of your favorite colors can be used for new traps
"I used to joke with people, 'Make sure you get yellow sheets!'" Said Dr. McNeil continues. "But to be honest, I think that would stretch the results a little." However, if odorants (pheromones) or carbon dioxide were combined, the results could certainly help to create better traps. Because both are attractants for bedbugs. (No)

Author and source information



Video: Bed Bugs. National Geographic (July 2022).


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