Ultrasound Devices Found in-Effective vs Bed Bugs

March 26th, 2015

Using ultrasonic frequencies are an alternative method for controlling certain pests that while available and marketed to the public are not all effective. In reality, few of these devices have been proven effective in repelling mosquitoes, cockroaches, or ants. Yet despite the lack of evidence, the devices continue to be sold. New versions of these devices that target bed bugs are now readily available.

According to an article that will appear in the Journal of Economic Entomology, commercial devices that produce ultrasound frequencies are NOT promising tools for repelling bed bugs. The results of tests of four electronic pest repellent devices designed to repel insect and mammalian pests by using sound will be published in the article. The article is titled “Efficacy of Commercially Available Ultrasonic Pest Repellent Devices to Affect Behavior of Bed Bugs,” by K. M. Yturralde and R. W. Hofstetter.

Each device, purchased online, was used according to manufacturers’ instructions.  In the study, a sound arena was created for each ultrasonic device. A control arena was also crated that featured no sound. The study found that there was no significant difference in the number of bed bugs observed in the control and sound arenas. Bed bugs were not deterred or attracted to the arena with the sound device.

The authors conclude that the ultrasonic devices need to produce the right combination of frequencies in order to attract bed bugs and they failed to do so. Bed bugs are commonly exposed to frequencies made by humans and by appliances found in homes. Future studies of bed bug bioacoustics might consider using low-frequency sounds produced by host species to attract bed bugs.

Bedbugs are small parasitic insects that bite exposed skin of sleeping humans and animals in order to feed on their blood. Bedbugs are not known to carry or spread disease.  About the size of an apple seed, they hide in the cracks and crevices of beds, box springs, headboards, frames and objects around a bed..

If you suspect that you have bedbugs in your home, professional extermination is highly recommended.

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