bed bug newsletter filled with useful information by Bed Bugs Limited of London

This is an open participation project to record a glossary of terms that relate to bedbugs, organised in an alphabetic format with common language definitions.

The open format allows anyone to contribute to the project using the form at the bottom of the page.We will always do our best to keep the glossary up to date and to integrate new entries as quickly as possible.



Active Monitor

A monitoring device designed to detect bed bugs through the use of some attractant, examples of known attractants include; CO2, heat, pheromones or lures..

Bat bugs

Cimex adjunctus are close relatives to bed bugs, in fact so close not many people can tell them apart without the use of a 30X magnification loop. They also tend not to leave cast skins and faecal traces in the sleeping and resting areas as they return to the primary host between visits into homes.They are however, very different in terms of how they need to be treated to ensure eradication.

Bed Bugs

The common name for Cimex Lectularius and Cimex Hemipterous derived from the Welsh word meaning ghost of the bed in homage to their cryptic nature.


The genus of insects that includes bed bugs.

Cimex adjunctus

The Latin name for Bat Bugs.

Cimex hemipterous

The Latin name for the tropical bedbug.

Cimex lectularius

The Latin name for the common or native bedbug.

Contact killer

The term used to describe a compound, most commonly a liquid that kills bed bugs on contact or shortly after contact.They only work when they come into direct contact with insects in the liquid form and rarely have much of a “residual” mode of action.

Diatomaceous Earth (DE)

An organic material made from fossilised single celled organisms which has insecticidal properties in that is causes bed bugs to dehydrate and die.Although it has a slow mode of action there is no risk of resistance.Although it is non toxic care should be taken with its application as most formulations pose a dust and fine particle risk.


Although this is often used as a general term it actually means a specific form of pest control treatment using gas based insecticides.It is rarely practiced in the UK due to the vast costs involved in tenting the properties concerned.However, we would rather correct the use of the term than allow another fallacy about pest control to continue.

Infestation Dynamics

The model by which bedbugs are introduced or reintroduced to a home, most accurately described as being either single source or local source in nature.


A product that has properties that kill insects.There are many different types and modes of actions of Insecticides from synthetic to organic.

Integrated Pest Control (IPC)

See Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

Integrated pest management (IPM), also known as Integrated Pest Control (IPC) is a broad-based approach that integrates practices for economic control of pests. IPM aims to suppress pest populations below the economic injury level (EIL).

Integrated Pest Eradication (IPE)

Integrated Pest Eradication (IPE) focuses on the complete and total eradication of the target pest using the tools most suited to achieving that result.Unlike IPM and IPC where the use of chemicals can play for of an integrated approach IPE has little use for chemicals other than as a residual protection which is often not needed because the problem is already resolved.There is also more focus on quality assurance and quality control steps than we tend to see with IPM / IPC.

Local source

focus on quality assurance and quality control steps than we tend to see with IPM / IPC.

Local source

The class of infestation dynamics where the source of bed bugs means that there is a risk of continual introduction or reintroduction.In such cases the treatment process needs to take into account how to detect and prevent these reintroduction’s.Common local sources include; adjoining properties, vehicles, public transport, work locations, regularly visited locations or something / someone who regularly comes into the home.

K9 Screening

The use of training scent detection dogs to detect the presence of bed bugs that are in a location.When combined with visual confirmation this can be a very powerful tool in detecting bedbugs and is often the first stage of a reactive process in commercial settings.


Most commonly a synthetic chemical product used to kill pests.

Passive Monitor

The term originated to describe the bed bug monitoring device covered by patents GB2,470,307B and GB2463953to David Cain of Bed Bugs Limited.


The things you can do in advance of a bed bug infestation to help limit the extent of the infestation or to detect the infestation at an early stage.This specifically does not include the illegal application of synthetic insecticides in situations where no bed bugs are present.


The things you to to resolve a bed bug problem once it has been identified to assist with or provide treatment.

Residual action

The term used to describe the action of a product that acts as an insecticide even once it has dried.Many compounds are “contact killers” but few actually have strong residual properties.


Definition to follow – why not help by writing one using the form below?

Single source

The class of infestation dynamics where the source of bed bugs was only made contact with on a single occasion such as a location that you sleep at only once.

Thermal Treatment

The use of heat to kill bed bugs.To ensure death the temperature must reach 121 F / 50 C throughout the items being heated.


Devices designed to trap/immobilise or kill bed bugs.

Traumatic Insemination

Definition to follow – why not help by writing one using the form below?

Tropical bedbugs

This is the common name of the species Cimex hemipterous and although they can be found anywhere in the world they are most commonly associated with tropical climates.They do however behave exactly the same as “native” or “common” bed bugs

Visual confirmation

The process of confirming the presence of bed bugs through finding live samples, cast skins, faecal traces or with more advanced training eggs and ureic traces.This is the gold standard of bed bug identification and MUST be conducted before treatment starts.

Additions / Corrections Form

New Term
Field is required!
Field is required!
Suggested definition (if you have a new term)
Field is required!
Field is required!
Modify a suggestion (please include which term you think needs modifying and why)
Field is required!
Field is required!
Please check the box below
Please enter your reCAPTCHA API keys in Super Forms > Settings > Form Settings