29 Dec Co2 traps : do they work?

It is well documented that Co2 and heat attracts bed bugs but it is still unknown what, if any, other cues attract bed bugs. We have tried using dry ice inside a climb up interceptor and it did catch more bugs than a random interceptor but the results were not an overwhelming success. In other cases I set glueboards around a small tank of Co2 in an infested empty suite and caught a handful of bed bugs – hardly earth shattering results.

In one case I had a moderate infestation in an apartment where the tenant refused to cooperate. I heat sterilized the bed and installed glue board/interceptor combination traps under the bed legs but the tenant refused to even enter the bed room. Instead the tenant slept either in his van or on a chair in the living room. We placed interceptors under the chairs legs and we continued to catch many bugs in these interceptors over a period of many months. As an experiment I placed a Co2 generator on the bed to see what would happen. The glueboards did catch a few bugs more than random but again the results were underwhelming. The vast majority of bugs caught in the suite were in the interceptors under the chair in the living room. I expected the bed /Co2 trap to catch more because the infestation was originally confined to the bedroom but I was wrong.

What we learn here is that the human host offers a wider spectrum of attractants than simple Co2. Given that heat is known to be a very close range attractant the lack of heat on the bed can not blamed for the experiment’s failure. The Co2 trap failed because a more complete bait (a human) was located elsewhere in the suite.

So if someone tries to sell you a miracle cure Co2 trap don’t listen. Your human body offers a far superior, and cheaper, attractant.