Cold winter killing some NYC pests (but not bed bugs, sorry) - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

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>>

  • Friday Night Live: August 22, 2014

    Friday Night Live: August 22, 2014

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:34 PM EDT2014-08-23 02:34:20 GMT
    This is Fox 5's Friday Night Live, a weekly celebration of the end of the work week. All summer long, the Fox 5 team brings you the latest in entertainment, nightlife, food, and music in our area. In this episode: Ace Frehley, Big Sean, Week End Trends, and Chef Luca Manfé of MasterChef.
    This is Fox 5's Friday Night Live, a weekly celebration of the end of the work week. All summer long, the Fox 5 team brings you the latest in entertainment, nightlife, food, and music in our area. In this episode: Ace Frehley, Big Sean, Week End Trends, and Chef Luca Manfé of MasterChef.
  • Berg'n: new beer and food hall in Brooklyn

    Berg'n: new beer and food hall in Brooklyn

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:00 PM EDT2014-08-23 02:00:35 GMT
    The guys behind the Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg are at it again with a new food and booze venue called Berg'n, a new beer hall in Crown Heights. The place doesn't officially open until August 27, 2014, but owners Eric Demby and Jonathan Butler are giving it a test run for special guests, family, and the press.
    The guys behind the Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg are at it again with a new food and booze venue called Berg'n, a new beer hall in Crown Heights. The place doesn't officially open until August 27, 2014, but owners Eric Demby and Jonathan Butler are giving it a test run for special guests, family, and the press.
  • Giving your college-bound kids their space

    Giving your college-bound kids their space

    Friday, August 22 2014 9:31 PM EDT2014-08-23 01:31:50 GMT
    Going off to college is an exciting time for the entire family, especially for the upcoming freshman. But with technology, parents can be in touch all the time. What's too much and what's just enough? Freshman move-in day seems to be harder on the parents than the students at Stony Brook University.
    Going off to college is an exciting time for the entire family, especially for the upcoming freshman. But with technology, parents can be in touch all the time. What's too much and what's just enough? Freshman move-in day seems to be harder on the parents than the students at Stony Brook University.
Powered by WorldNow

KTBC FOX 7
119 East 10th Street
Austin, TX 78701

Phone: (512) 476-7777
Fax: (512) 495-7001

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