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Bed Bug Control
Before eating, nymphs are translucent or pale, while adults are mostly reddish brown or mahogany.
Bed bugs are very thin, oval, and flat. Just like a potato chip, if you'll pardon the comparison. They have a 3-segmented beak, 4-segmented antennae, and small compound eyes. They have wings but don't actually fly. Instead they scurry across the floor. Nymphs resemble adults.
Bed bugs were sending people jumping in bed since well before World War II, though got under control with much-needed improvements in hygiene, and widespread control measures. Recently they have made a comeback, and are found throughout the world.
Bed bugs cut straight to the chase - instead of eating our food, they eat us. Or at least our blood. Thus they prefer places where we spend a lot of time sitting and sleeping, such as the sofa in front of the widescreen TV and our mattress.
Also box springs, headboards, bed frames, furniture, curtains, loose wallpaper, behind picture frames and items in rooms. They make themselves at home and invade apartments, hotels, motels, shelters and modes of transport. They are nocturnal - getting busy on you when you are busy sleeping.
Bed bugs are basically tiny vampires. They mainly feed on human blood, but may also attack pets, poultry, and other mammals and birds.
Females lay eggs in secluded areas on rough surfaces, laying up to 5 a day (in batches of 10-50) and 500 during a lifetime. They are tiny and white, sticky, and covered. Don't try to go looking for them; you will need a good magnifying glass, because they're about the size of a dust speck! They're not much bigger once they hatch as nymphs; only the size of a pinhead. They molt 5 times before reaching maturity, and need a blood meal in between each molt. Under favorable conditions (70-90°F) they can mature in as little as a month, producing 3 or more generations per year. If there's not a ready source of blood around, nymphs can survive for months, and adults over a year.
Bed bugs - ouch! - cause - ouch! - painful bites. They suck blood with their piercing mouths that contain 2 needle-like stylets. One has a groove that carries saliva into the wound, while the other has a groove through which blood is sucked. Bites are around the neck, feet, arm or hands, and similar to that of a flea, without a red area in the center. Bed bugs have been found carrying 27 human pathogens, but have not been proven to transmit disease.
Bed bugs are practiced hitchhikers. They can be picked up in trains, planes and other automobiles, or carried on clothing, bedding, luggage, or firewood. They also live on mammals and birds near homes. There are 3 species that attack people, and may also bite birds, rodents and bats.
They key to eliminating bed bugs is being thorough. As they don't fly, they generally stick close to their host. Thorough inspection and treatment is necessary to achieve control. Infestations can be identified by fecal spots, egg cases, and shed skins under wallpaper, behind picture frames, mattresses, box springs and inside cracks and crevices near where people sleep.
This includes all furnishings and draperies. You may also notice blood spots on the sheets or blankets. Preparation is necessary, and you must thoroughly wash sheets and mattress covers. Vacuum infested areas before and after treatment. Then remove vacuum bag, seal in an additional plastic bag, and discard. You can purchase a plastic bed cover to seal off mattresses from further infestation; just make sure it is the type designed for this. If you decide to treat the infestation on your own, remember that contacting the insects with the material is essential. When using any pesticide, be sure it is registered for the target/pest location. Read the entire label prior to use. Follow all label directions, restrictions, and precautions. As the treatment process is very thorough, you may want to use a professional exterminator. Continued monitoring and additional treatments may be necessary. For apartments, motels, hotels or other commercial facilities, please contact us through the link listed in this website. This insect requires treatment of all areas it has spread to for effective and long-term control, so it is important to survey these areas for proper recommendations.
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