Bedbugs

Pests-&-TipsHow did that happen? These are indeed scary creatures. Everybody thought we were done with them long ago. The exact reasons for their resurgence are still being explored. Everything from global warming to immigration is used as an explanation. Currently all methods of control are very time consuming. There are three common approaches to bedbug elimination:

1. The pesticide approach requires a great deal of detailed chemical application and frequently destruction of infested materials; sometimes the beds themselves need to be destroyed. Often multiple treatments in the same space are required to ensure elimination.

2. Allied Services can also provide a heat option. This method requires special preparation by the tenants. It is extremely well suited to multi-family units such as condos and apartments. It should be noted that whole house heating is also available. One of the advantages to using heat is
that it generally does not require destruction or disposal of beds and other property. Steam heat applications are available but are limited, particularly in mature infestations, because many articles will sustain damage from this method.

3. The third method of whole house or building tenting (fumigation) achieves tremendous results with the lowest fail rate. New methods of control and elimination are being explored; however, nothing simple has yet been discovered. It is important to note that accidental re-infestation can occur very easily. Successful programs will require consulting from Allied Services to minimize this problem.

The bedbug is shaped so it can easily access narrow spaces. In most beds evidence is most clearly seen in seams and corner guards on mattresses and box springs. Commonly, sheets have blood spots on them from the bite sites and/or feces of the bugs. The adult is around 1/5 of an inch long. They feed on human blood. This is likely why they are light reddish to dark reddish brown in appearance. They are oval in shape with a slight narrowing near the head. It is generally accepted that they go through five molts on their way to adulthood feeding at least one blood meal between each molt. The average female may produce up to 200 eggs during her lifetime.

In the absence of man they may feed on other warm-blooded animals including birds or rats. This is why they may be present even if people have vacated a structure for a long time. Studies vary as to the life expectancy of this lovely creature; one year seems to be about the average.

People react to bites of all insects differently. Some have a severe reaction and redness and swelling occur regardless of what bites them. Others have very little reaction and may only become mildly irritated by bites. The good news regarding bed bugs is that they are not generally associated with disease transmission. If you suspect you have bedbugs, collection of a specimen for identification is quite helpful. Simply keep the critter in a small glass bottle or clear sealable plastic bag for positive identification by a pest professional.

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