You’ve seen the news on bed bugs. You feel confident you are knowledgeable on the pest and have little to no concern on how you and your home could be affected. They are hard to get rid of, feed on humans in their sleep, cause itchy,red welts and are mostly found in neglected hotel rooms and such. Fact is, as true as these facts may be, they are also very,very incorrect.
What Is A Bed Bug?
Bed Bugs, also known as Cimex lectularius, are parasitic insects that exclusively feed on blood. The name “Bed Bug” derives from the insects preferred habit: warm houses and especially inside bedding and other sleep areas. Although they are not exclusively nocturnal, bed bugs are most active during night. Without being noticed, they feed on their host(s) while they sleep. For thousands of years, bed bugs have been known as a human parasite. During the 1940’s, bed bugs were mostly eradicated in the developed world, but have increased in great number since 1995.
Bed Bugs In America
Bed Bugs are found in all 50 states. Mistakenly, people have thought Bed Bugs to only inhabit big cities or third-world countries. The NPMA’s ” Bed Bugs in America” survey found that 17 percent of those surveyed reported having bed bugs in the Northeast; 20 percent in the Midwest; 20 percent in the South; and 19 percent in the West. It is worth mentioning that Bug Bugs are more prevalent in urban areas, 3 times the amount found in rural areas due to population, apartment complexes and increased mobility. These factors are conducive to the rapid spread and breeding of the Bug Bug.
Where Are Bed Bugs Found?
Hotels come to mind when most people are asked this question, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. Bed Bugs thrive in single-family homes, apartments, hospitals, college dorm rooms, office buildings, schools, buses, trains, movie theaters, retail stores and almost anywhere humans inhabit for any period of time. In fact, according to the “Bugs without Borders” study, 89 percent of pest professionals report treating bed bug infestations in single-family homes, and 88 percent report treating bed bug infestations in apartments/condos. Other most commonly treated areas include 67% hotels/motels, 35% college dorms, 9% of modes of transportation and 4% in movie theaters. Knowing these facts makes it more and more difficult to rest assured your home may not be infested, but being informed is the key to prevention.
Preventing Bed Bug Infestation
In the summer of 2010, a panic ensued when reports were made on Bed Bugs and their apparent inhabitation of nearly every public place. Well known and respected department stores, such as Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s reported finding, and subsequently treating, bed bug infestations in their New York locations. Suddenly, fear swept over the nation and people were taking extreme precautions. Skipping the theater, buying clothes online, avoiding hand shaking and many more absurd measures were taken to prevent exposure and infestation of this blood sucking pest. As fast as it had begun, the Bed Bug epidemic soon became of less concern as department stores and commonly inhabited areas announced that more effort would be placed in preventing the spread of these parasites and less media coverage was aired. But, successful Bed Bug prevention and control requires far more than one visit from a pest control technician. Washing, vacuuming, steaming and sealing areas of known or possible bed bug inhabitants is necessary. Homeowners must be vigilant, never feeling too content, when it comes to preventing Bed Bug infestations. Whether you have treated your home for Bed Bugs, or you have never felt the need to even consider it, preventative measures should be on every homeowners mind.
Bed Bug 411
● Bed Bugs can go up to 12 months without a blood meal.
● Bed Bugs can survive temperatures from freezing to 122 degrees.
● Bed Bugs feed in a pattern, clusters or rows of bites are common.
● Components in bed bug saliva act as an anesthetic and promote increased blood flow at the bite site, making the feeding process quick and nearly painless.
● Female Bed Bugs lay 1-5 eggs per day.
● Bed Bugs can produce 3 to 4 generations in one year.
● Bed Bugs do NOT carry or transmit disease.
● Bed Bug bites can cause an allergic reaction.
● Bed Bug bites are similar to Mosquito bites, causing red,itchy welts.
How To Fix The Problem
Because the Bed Bug has a strong survival instinct, and can survive temperatures from freezing to scolding as well as remain unfed for up to 12 months, D.I.Y. projects will not suffice in treating current infestations, nor preventative options. Even with pest control services, you must remain aware and disciplined in your own methods of prevention. Together, we can rid these blood sucking parasites from your home, or prevent them from occupying it in the first place. Call Okeena Termite & Pest Control for more information and request your FREE quote today!
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