How do bedbugs multiply

Spring awakening with the stink bugs

Rumbling in the living room, especially at the lamps in the evening. That was the sound of autumn 2018. It was the year of bedbugs. The dry, warm weather made sure of that. There were also many grapes and apples that the bugs could tap with their trunks.

Axel Weiss from the SWR environmental department knows that the conditions for reproduction are ideal: "The bugs managed two generations in the past year, one is normal." Therefore, there were twice as many bugs.

Up to 450 eggs

That also explains the bug invasion in the apartments. "The bugs came to our home in autumn because they are afraid of the cold and know that they will not survive temperatures below minus 10 degrees," says Axel Weiss.

Once the animals have found a cozy spot, they usually stay there until they lay their eggs in spring after mating. And that can add an additional disgust factor to spring cleaning, because a bug lays up to 450 eggs.

What do the bugs look like?

The so-called rostrum - a kind of multi-part trunk - is characteristic of the six-legged breed. They use it to suck up food. They don't bite people. The house or bed bug, which feeds on blood, is an exception.

In 2018, very different species were on the way, from the strikingly colored fire bug to the gray garden bug and the green stink bug to the immigrated marbled stink bug, which comes from Asia. They were brought into Europe in containers that came by ship from East Asia. This bug benefits from globalization - but also from climate change. Because the animal finds temperatures here that allow it to survive and are ideal for reproduction.

Pest in the garden and in the field

In the United States, the marbled stink bug has become a real problem. It is found in more than 30 states and is a pest that causes great damage every year. It is therefore not a welcome guest in the European garden or in the field.

One problem is that the marbled stink bug has no natural predator in this country. This is not the case in China, where researchers have already found a biological weapon against the bug invasion. The Chinese parasitic wasps fight the stink bugs effectively. In order to be able to use them in Europe, however, a risk analysis would first have to be carried out. Because the Chinese parasitic wasps could also decimate native beneficial insects and endangered native insect species.

Get rid of bugs - this is how it works

According to the Nature Conservation Union (Nabu), the animals are harmless to humans - but release a foul smelling secretion when they sense danger. Hence they got their name stink bug. If you want to get rid of the animals, you should therefore proceed carefully. Axel Weiss recommends: "The best thing to do is to slide a piece of paper under the rather sluggish animal, put a glass over it and then take it out! There are also warmer places outside."

Thousands of species of proboscis
Basically, bugs do not belong to the group of beetles, they form their own order in the insect world. According to Nabu, there is no pupal stage in them, unlike for example beetles or butterflies. According to the organization, there are just under 1,000 types of bugs in Germany and around 40,000 worldwide.