Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department


Committee Chair/Advisor

Benson, Eric P

Committee Member

Adler , Peter H

Committee Member

Gerard , Patrick D

Committee Member

Zungoli , Patricia A


The recent resurgence of bed bugs has led to an explosion of bed bug research influenced by the applied needs of pest management professionals. I assessed the needs of pest management professionals who deal with bed bugs in South Carolina. Bed bugs were reported in 28 of 46 counties in South Carolina. Previous samples of bed bug populations have displayed a 1:1 sex-ratio suggesting females do not use aggregations and harborages to hide from males and traumatic insemination, which can be harmful to females. Aggregations are biased in composition, suggesting that females are able to hide from males within harborages. Previous studies have shown that male bed bugs and fifth-instar nymphs, but not mated females, release alarm pheromone that deters males from mating with them. I showed that virgin females did not produce alarm pheromone as a deterrent for mating, although the sample size was small. I evaluated the use of heat with residual insecticides on surfaces over time, using both a resistant and susceptible bed bug strain. Products generally performed better if unheated than if heated before bed bug exposure, but susceptible mortality on heated control panels was high, reaching 100% on metal panels. Phantom products were more effective over time on all surfaces for up to three months, and performed best on wood surfaces. Temprid was more effective over time on wood surfaces, and Temprid and Transport products performed best on metal surfaces. Heat had a stronger effect on the susceptible strain than on the resistant strain. The reported results will provide important biological and applied information that will help pest management professionals control bed bugs more efficiently.

Included in

Entomology Commons



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