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Research experiment suggests Polar Vortex may have killed large amount of invasive stink bugs

Stink bugs aren't likely to have survived that kind of cold.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto
Brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys) insect animal

A Virginia Tech research experiment suggests that January's Polar Vortex may have been responsible for a drop in some invasive insect species.

According to a National Pest Management Association news release, stink bugs may have had the biggest struggle in the frigid temperatures.

The experiment estimates that the Polar Vortex may have killed 95 percent of stink bugs that failed to find warm shelter. Emerald ash borer and southern pine beetles also likely didn't survive the polar plunge, according to the release.

But that doesn't mean all annoying insects saw a dip in numbers. You may not be seeing as many termites and mosquitoes right now, but they're still out there. Even cockroaches and bed bug populations survive as there's a good chance they've already laid eggs that will hatch in warmer temperatures.

The National Pest Management Association says bed bugs can survive temperatures from nearly freezing to 122 degrees, while cockroaches are also able to survive because they seek shelter indoors. 

Mosquitoes also endure the winters by hibernating inside hollow logs, while subterranean termites burrow into the soil below the frost lines to stay warm. Drywood termites shelter inside dry wood until the spring thawing. 

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