Colors And Bed Bugs
May 31, 2016
When you think about bed bugs you don't typically think about colors. I mean, isn’t that the last thing on your mind? After all, if you notice a bed bug in your hotel room; or in the seam of the taxi seat; or, worse yet, in your own bedroom, I am quite certain that the last thing on your mind is, “I wonder if they are enjoying the color of my sheets, (or jacket)! If you are like most people, your first instinct is to scream in horror and try desperately to kill that little bug before jumping in the shower to try to wash those creepy little things off just in case any have decided to climb aboard. Right?
Well, you may want to rethink your reaction to bed bugs. You may just want to make color one of your first thoughts when it comes to these creatures. Color seems to be important to these little hitchhiking pests. According to a recent article published in the Journal of Medical Entomology, bed bugs seem to have preference when it comes to color choices. It’s true! A recent study done by researchers concluded that these bugs are definitively drawn to certain colors – across the board. All of the adult bugs and almost all of the nymphs demonstrated color preference. The only holdouts were the tiniest of nymphs in the first instar (phase) – those little itty bitty babies didn’t really care about color at all.
So here is how the research was conducted. These scientists placed little bug-sized colored tents in Petri dishes and added bed bugs in different stages of development. In every instance (except the aforementioned first instar stage) the bed bugs preferred the tents made from black or red paper. The tents made from yellow, green, or white paper were shunned. It is assumed that the first instar bed bugs either have not developed their sight enough to care about color, or that they do not need to ‘hide’ in the darker colors because they are still basically colorless and can blend in with the light colors. These color preferences were conclusive no matter the sex of the bug.
While this testing alone cannot determine for certain the effects of color in real world situations, it surely does make you take notice. After all, the next time you decide it is time to replace your old, worn-out luggage; you may want to consider the color of that luggage and add a little splash to your travel style. Although this alone cannot guarantee that you will not bring these pests home with you, hey, it’s worth consideration! And it would certainly make those long waits at the luggage belt in the airport a lot less drab.
No matter what color your luggage or clothing is, if you find that you have inadvertently allowed bed bugs to hitch a ride home with you, give us a call. Moyer Pest has been successfully eradicating unwanted pests in Pennsylvania, including bed bugs, since 1869. Our highly trained technicians will deal with your bed bug issues safely and discreetly. There is no substitution for the peace of mind that brings. Bed bugs will be a worry from the past with Moyer Pest.