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Bug bombs are ineffective at dealing with German cockroaches indoors. Credit: Matt Bertone.
Total release foggers, commonly known as "bug bombs," are ineffective at removing cockroaches from indoor environments, according to a new study from North Carolina State University.
Chemicals - Places - Cockroaches - Most—on - Underside
Bug-bomb chemicals fail to reach places where cockroaches congregate the most—on the underside of surfaces and inside cabinets, NC State researchers say. Besides leaving behind numerous cockroaches, bug bombs also leave behind nasty toxic residue in the middle of floors and countertops, areas cockroaches generally avoid but which are heavily used by humans and pets.
"There's been a general assumption that bug bombs work to eliminate cockroaches indoors, but no one had conducted a formal assessment of their efficacy and any exposure risks," said Zachary DeVries, an NC State postdoctoral researcher and the lead author of the study, published in BMC Public Health. "We've done that simultaneously in this study."
Effectiveness - Release - Foggers - Researchers - Bug
To understand more about the effectiveness of total release foggers, the researchers tested four different commercially available bug bombs with various insecticide active ingredients in five different apartment complexes with moderate to severe infestations of German cockroaches (Blattella germanica), common indoor household pests.
"All the fogger products contained pyrethroids, a class of fast-acting insecticides, and some contained piperonyl butoxide, a chemical that prevents roaches from metabolizing, or breaking down, the insecticide," said Coby Schal, Blanton J. Whitmire Distinguished Professor of Entomology at NC State and senior author of the paper.
Estimates - Cockroach - Populations - Homes - Researchers
After gauging estimates of cockroach populations in 20 homes, the researchers set off the bug bombs, following the labels' instructions—and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency guidelines on preparing the homes for fogger release—to the letter.
The researchers then monitored cockroach populations two weeks and one month after the bombs were released and found no declines from the pre-intervention estimates.
Products - Nothing - Cockroach - Populations
"The bug-bomb products did absolutely nothing to control cockroach populations in...
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