Cold winter killing some NYC pests (but not bed bugs, sorry) - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Cold winter killing some NYC pests (but not bed bugs, sorry)

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

It's March and Central Park is still in a deep freeze, but if you need a little silver lining during this drab and dreary winter, then consider this: the extreme cold temperatures could be cutting into the populations of some of our areas peskiest creepy crawlers.

The stink bug is one of the less welcome residents of the tri-state area. Not only is the invasive species a nuisance, but it can seriously damage crops and plants. And while they can survive in and in fact prefer, chilly temperatures, entomologist Louis Sorkin of the American Museum of Natural History says that this long and harsh winter could prove to be a form of pest control.

"Extremely cold temperatures, extended periods of time of cold temperatures will knock out a certain part of the population," Sorkin says.

Research students at Virginia Tech put about 2,500 brown marmorated stink bugs in buckets with insulated tubes and left them outside for the winter for later study. The professor says that in past years three-quarters of the bugs survive, but this year the extreme cold killed 95 percent of them.

The weather could also be killing members of other invasive species, like the emerald ash borer and the southern pine beetle, which has been attacking trees in New Jersey.

But Sorkin warns, any population dips will likely be only temporary.

"They usually rebound given years in the future when those temps aren't as bad," he says.

And of course, if insects like the stink bug are already inside your house don't count on them freezing to death.

As for cockroaches, scientists just discovered a new strain on the High Line that is apparently winter-proof.

So, will the polar vortex or the extreme cold impact the bed bug population of New York City?

"Not at all," Sorkin says.

The bottom line is that researchers say the polar vortex is unlikely to wipe out any species but they say it is possible it will at least keep some populations of the bugs in check.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • August 23, 2014

    Staten Island march traffic and transit advisory

    Staten Island march traffic and transit advisory

    Friday, August 22 2014 3:07 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:07:48 GMT
    The NYPD and the MTA have announced road and transit changes for Staten Island that will be in effect on Saturday, August 23, 2014, due to the scheduled rally in honor of Eric Garner, the Staten Island man who died during an arrest.
    The NYPD and the MTA have announced road and transit changes for Staten Island that will be in effect on Saturday, August 23, 2014, due to the scheduled rally in honor of Eric Garner, the Staten Island man who died during an arrest.
  • 1990 arson-murder rap tossed, Queens man is set free

    1990 arson-murder rap tossed, Queens man is set free

    A former New York businessman whose arson-murder conviction was overturned in the death of his daughter was freed from prison Friday after 24 years behind bars, following a judge's ruling that the case against him had been based on now-debunked arson science.
    A former New York businessman whose arson-murder conviction was overturned in the death of his daughter was freed from prison Friday after 24 years behind bars, following a judge's ruling that the case against him had been based on now-debunked arson science.
  • Sanitation men nearly throw away mayor's piano

    Sanitation men nearly throw away mayor's piano

    Friday, August 22 2014 1:39 PM EDT2014-08-22 17:39:56 GMT
    A piano donated by Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop nearly ended up pushing up daises in a landfill instead of making music in a pedestrian plaza. Fulop gave the upright so residents could play tunes in a pedestrian plaza that opened on Monday.
    A piano donated by Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop nearly ended up pushing up daises in a landfill instead of making music in a pedestrian plaza. Fulop gave the upright so residents could play tunes in a pedestrian plaza that opened on Monday.

Powered by WorldNow

KSAZ-TV & KUTP
511 W. Adams St.
Phoenix, AZ 85003

Phone: (602) 257-1234
Fax: (602) 262-0177

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices