Bed Bugs - Management of Bed Bugs Cimex lectularius...

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Management of Bed Bugs, Cimex lectularius Samantha Swanhart, 1488-4485 IPM 3022 Spring 2012 History of Bed Bugs The origin of bed bug management dates back more than 3,500 years. Records show that bugs first parasitized bats then migrated to humans when humans inhabited the same caves in the Mediterranean where civilization began. When hunters and herdsmen began moving around a lot, it became difficult for bed bugs to become estab- lished until humans began to formalize cities and villages. At first, the bugs were con- sidered pests as well as elixir. Egyptians used to drink a bed bug cocktail as a cure for snakebites, Greeks and Romans burned them to loosen a leeches hold, and ancients also believed they were a cure for diseases when ingested with wine, beans or an egg. Early bed bug management was created by early Greek philosophers around 400 BC, when they hung their feet off a hare or stag at the foot of the bed. Others suggested hanging a bear skin or setting a vessel of cols water under the bed while traveling. As civilization expanded, so did bed bugs. The poor suffered the most from in- festations mainly from their living arrangements and uncleanliness of their bedrooms; but the heat from sleeping and cooking fires for the wealthy also allowed the bugs to in- fest. Bed bugs were first reported in England around 1583, and hitchhiked with European explorers and settlers to the Americas where they started infesting seaport towns and moving inland as the settlers moved inland. Early methods of managing bed bugs are traced back to 1690 with a business to exterminate bed bugs for the wealthy. They did work by contract, performing annual ex- ams as an assurance to keep bed bugs at bay. Centuries later, the industry is continuing routine bed bug inspections. Catching the infestation early reduces spread into other areas and pre-emptive inspections make it easier to manage because of their lack of in- secticides.
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