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- bedbugs are found in bedding
- are dorsoventrally flattened and being thin means that they can hide in narrow cracks and crevices
- mattresses where they can access their food easily (humans)
- bed sheets
- cracks and crevices in bed frames
- bed heads
- wooden bed slats
- furniture (under neath bed side table, chest of draws under the lowest draw, bedside cupboard
- skirting boards and wall joints
- curtains (especially if near to the bed)
- electrical (power points, light switches and telephone sockets)
In complexes with shared facilities
- lounges (underneath the arms, along cushion seams, behind buttons etc..)
- Adult bed bugs are wingless insects
- roughly oval in shape
- 5-6mm long when fully grown
- fast runners
- rust brown in colour and change to a deeper red brown following a blood meal
- tend to be paler in colour
- from 1- 4mm in length
Females can deposit one to five eggs a day, and may lay 200 to 500 eggs in its life. Under normal room temperatures and with an adequate food supply, they can live for more than 300 days.
Signs of a Bed Bug Infestation
There are many possible signs of bed bug activity. The first would be seeing the bugs. Adult bed bugs are about the shape and size of an apple seed. A second sign would be case skins. As the juvenile bugs grow, they shed their skins, discovery of which can indicate their presence.
After feeding, bed bugs return to their harborage to hide. They eventually defecate in these areas, which appears as black to brown stains on porous surfaces or black to brown mounds on nonporous surfaces.
Bites also may indicate bed bug activity, but further signs will need to be found, since other sources can cause red welts on the skin.
The Life cycle:
Bed bugs are small, nocturnal insects that hide within tight spaces. If you are not able to locate the insects themselves, keep an eye out for black spots caused by bedbug fecal smears.
If you believe that your office is experiencing a bed bug infestation, contact your local pest control professional to arrange an inspection and consultation.
Bed Bugs in Mattress covers
Bed bugs are typically found hiding in cracks and crevices in bedrooms, and mattress covers are no exception. Infested mattresses, comforters, cushioned furniture and mattress covers may show bed bug fecal smears, which are the dried excrement of bed bugs. Maturing bed bug nymphs molt or shed their skins during their development; these skins can sometimes be found in or around infested materials. In addition, bed bugs themselves are often visible if the source is examined closely enough. Check the seams of your mattress or mattress cover for insects.
Over-the-counter sprays prove largely ineffective in treating bed bug infestations. Vacuuming and laundering at high temperatures provides short-term relief, but if there are bed bugs on a mattress cover, it is likely that bed bugs and their eggs are also present within the mattress, sheets and elsewhere within a home. If you suspect a bed bug infestation, contact your local pest control management professional for an evaluation.
Bed Bugs in your Pillow
Mattresses and pillows make potential habitats for bed bugs. Pillows may also be host to bed bug eggs, making them a potential point of bed bug infestations.
A possible sign that bed bugs have infested pillows may be the appearance of bites. Although some individuals do not experience any reaction to bed bug bites, some bites develop into red bumps within a few days. These bites, also known as papules or wheals, can appear in a row.
If you experience what you believe to be a bed bug bite, check your pillow closely. Small, dark spots of bed bug feces can be indicators of the insects’ presence. A sweet, musty scent may emanate from infested pillows, mattresses or sheets, as well.
Laundering your pillow and pillowcase may temporarily rid those items of bed bugs. However, bed bugs commonly infest many other locations in living spaces and are not easily exterminated by homeowners. If you suspect a bed bug infestation, contact your pest controller to arrange for an inspection and consultation.
How To Get Rid of Bed Bugs
It’s possible to pick up bed bugs almost any place—they’ve infested offices, stores, hotels, gyms and countless other places. If bed bugs are suspected then careful inspection must be undertaken and all possible hiding places within infested and adjoining rooms examined. Once all likely sources have been identified, then an approved insecticide, which has some residual activity, should be applied to all harbourages followed by vacuuming the treated area to remove any dead bed bugs and their eggs entirely. Infested clothing can be washed in hot water and dried on the hot cycle of the clothes drier. Delicate materials can be placed into the freezer. Pesticides will need to be applied in conjunction with any non-chemical means of control. Good housekeeping practices and a reduction in possible harbourages such as cracks and crevices will discourage repeat infestations.
They can hide in your luggage, personal belongings, or even on you, and hitchhike a ride back to your home, condo, townhouse or apartment. Once indoors, they can be extremely difficult to control without the help of an experienced pest specialist.
A bed bug infestation has nothing to do with cleanliness — you can pick them up in the finest hotels, and they can hitchhike into the cleanest homes at any time. But, you can help reduce your chances of a costly bed bug infestation by catching them early.
Thorough laundering of sheets, mattresses, clothing and pillows will assist in treating Bed Bugs once and after chemical is applied to combat the problem
When traveling, think of the acronym S.L.E.E.P. to remember the following action steps to help avoid bringing bed bugs home with you.
- Survey surfaces for signs of an infestation, such as tiny rust-colored spots on bed sheets, mattress tags and seams, and bed skirts.
- Lift and look for all bed bug hiding spots, including underneath the mattress, bed frame, headboard and furniture. Typically, they come out at night to feed, but during the day they are most likely found within a 1.5 meter radius of the bed.
- Elevate your luggage on a luggage rack away from the bed and wall, since bed bugs can often hide behind headboards, artwork, picture frames and electrical outlet panels.
- Examine your luggage carefully while repacking and when you return home. Always keep luggage off the bed and store it in a closet or other area, far away from your bedroom.
- Place all your clothing from your luggage immediately in the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting upon returning home from travel.
In the House
When at home, follow these handy tips to help keep bed bugs at bay.
- Remove all clutter from your home, which makes finding bed bugs easier.
- Wash and dry your bed linens often using the hottest temperature allowed for the fabric.
- Closely inspect any second-hand furniture for bed bugs before you bring it into your residence.
- Inspect your residence regularly—after a move-in, a trip, when a service worker comes in or guests stay overnight.
Think You Might Have a Bed Bug Infestation?
Notify your Pest Controller immediately, or tell your property manager if you are renting so they can begin to create a customized treatment for your bed bugs. Bed bugs can multiply quickly, so early detection is critical to help prevent an even larger infestation.