Bed bugs are forging a gigantic revival in the West. They were practically wiped out in the Fifties due to the widespread use of DDT, which has since been proscribed. It took them forty to fifty years to recover, but in 1995 they started their comeback. In 2004, there were 82 instances of bed bugs in New York, but only five years later, in 2009, that figure had mushroomed to 10,985.
Of the top three Western cities with bed bug problems, two of them are in the USA. First is Colorado, Ohio, second is New York and third is Toronto, Canada. Luckily, bedbugs do not transmit human diseases, although there is no known reason why they should not. They feed by inserting two tubes into the victim’s skin and squirting saliva that contains anaesthetic and anticoagulant through one and drawing blood with the other.
This injection of saliva means that bedbugs can feed on you without you even being aware of it, although that same saliva is to blame for the allergic reaction that most people undergo in the form of red marks, swelling and itchiness.
Once bedbugs have established themselves in a premises, and by the time you notice them, there is normally a serious infestation in your premises, they are very hard to get rid of.
Once infested, you could have hundreds or even thousands of bedbugs. If you let it get this far, you will have to call in specialized pest controllers and you may also have to throw out a lot of your furniture including your bed.
The main refuge locations for bedbugs are mattresses, sofas, curtains, clothing, pillows and carpets. They may have to be thrown out as well. In very acute cases, you will have to move out for weeks while your residence is being treated.
Other favourite hiding places are furniture, the bed frame, skirtings, architrave, loose wall paper and damaged plaster. Sometimes whole plasterboard partition walls will have to be taken down, as might skirtings and architraves. Another way of fighting bedbugs is to seal this woodwork off with caulk, mastic or silicone.
The difficulty is that even if you get rid of your bedbugs, you can get them back very easily. Just as easily as anyone else can. This is because bedbugs like to hitch a lift. They manage this by attaching themselves to your clothing, say, under your collar, in your pocket or in the lining and letting you take them home, where they can start a new infestation.
In Denver, staff at the central library found that bedbugs were distributing themselves inside the spine of their books. The fact is that you cannot forecast where you will not uncover bedbugs. Infestations in judges’ chambers, dentists’ offices, doctors’ surgeries, cinemas, buses, taxis, schools and waiting rooms have all had to be fumigated.
It is time to be aware of bedbugs, they are not a serious health threat, but they are not pleasant either. Nobody wants them. So, keep your eyes open, be careful of buying second-hand furniture and launder your clothes in very hot water or dry clean them if you can.
Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many topics, but is currently concerned with getting rid of bedbugs? If you are interested in this, please go over to our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more details.
Do you know whether you have ever come across a bed bug? You probably have not. Not yet, but the odds that you will are increasing every day. This is because bed bugs are undergoing an explosion in their numbers and mankind is quite helpless to stop them at the moment, although a number of people are working on it.
You see, the problem is that bed bugs are pretty much tolerant to every insecticide that we have. They were almost wiped out in the West in the Forties and Fifties with the extensive use of DDT, but the ones that survived and the ones that have been brought into the country are resistant to pesticides.
Scientists are working on pesticides that will be effective against bed bugs, but there is no light at the end of the tunnel so far.
So, we are stuck with a burgeoning population of bed bugs. How do you get bed bugs? Usually, you just pick them up and take them home or someone does it for you. It is thought that foreign travel and immigration are largely responsible for the first members of our new bed bug community.
Nowadays, you can pick them up anyplace where people go: taxis, cinemas, restaurants, hotels, motels, cars, buses and planes. Even in the doctor’s surgery.
It used to be believed that bed bugs only flourished in poor peoples’ houses, but this is incorrect. In fact, the rich are more likely to get them than the poor, because they travel more often. You can also be given bedbugs in secondhand furniture, clothing and suitcases.
Bedbugs like to creep into in cracks, so you could be sitting on a bus and one will clamber up the back of your coat and nuzzle under your collar. There it might lay a few eggs and walk off or it might go to sleep. When you get home, you will put your coat in the wardrobe and a few days later you will have your very own family of hungry little bedbugs. It is that easy.
Some bedbugs will also live on birds and bats. These bedbugs would rather bird blood, but if there are not many around, you may find them dropping from the ceiling onto you, if you have birds or bats in your loft. Bats are protected now, so you will have to have them removed, but you ought to discourage birds from nesting above you.
The bedbugs will be attracted to the CO2 on your breath and your body heat and then they use pheromones to tell the others where you are. It usually only takes a bedbug five minutes to feed and then it goes back home to sleep it off for three to five days.
A mature bedbug has gone through six moultings and when a mature female has been inseminated, she can lay between 300 and 1,000 eggs in her lifetime of about six to twelve months. She will lay several eggs a day and they will hatch out in about ten days. So, you only need one pregnant female and you are in trouble very soon.
If you have a few dozen females laying eggs in your mattress, it will take less than a fortnight before dozens of baby bedbugs (called nymphs) are hatching out every day and then one of their relations will lead them straight to you.
Owen Jones, the author of this article, writes on many topics, but is currently concerned with how do you get bed bugs? If you are interested in this, please visit our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for further details.
You cannot say with any certainty where bed bugs are living; you cannot even speculate, just by looking around you. You could be sitting in a chair in a posh hotel waiting for someone to come down or you could be drinking tea at a friend’s house and you are just as likely to pick up a bed bug.
The developed Western world has not been through this kind of situation for about sixty years. However, since 1995, bed bugs have been multiplying almost unbridled and we are approaching the conditions people were living in before the Second World War. That is a very sad state of affairs indeed.
Particularly when you realize that before the war, you could put a bit of poison down and kill them. Nowadays, you cannot, because some bedbugs have become immune to a lot of the insecticides commonly available to domestic households. So, in a way we are worse off than we were 60 years ago and unless something comes to our aid, it can only get worse.
Although bedbugs wreak most mayhem in a bed, that is not normally where people get them from. They also live in the creases of material in the seats of buses, trains, taxis, hotel rooms, restaurants and even airplanes. However, bedbugs are not taken home attached to your skin like a flea or a tick.
Instead they will crawl into a hem or a pocket or under a collar, drawn by your body heat or breath and either go to sleep or lay eggs. A female can lay 300 eggs in a single day – not a great deal by insect terms, but do you want 301 bedbugs in your bedroom wardrobe by the end of next week?
I am sure that you have become aware how difficult it is to completely avoid the risks of picking up bed bugs and taking them home. Bed bugs have natural enemies, but it is uncertain that you would rather have bed bugs than the insects that prey on them – cockroaches, ants, spiders and centipedes – and insecticides are not always effective.
The one thing that certainly kills them, besides being trodden on by a size ten army boot, is heat. No stages of the bedbug’s life can survive temperatures above 45c.
This may be noteworthy, because modern washing powders are meant to get clothes clean at 30c, thus saving electricity, but they also unintentionally save the lives of the bedbugs on your clothes as well. You can make certain that your clothes are bedbug-free by washing them at 46-50c and you can eradicate existing bedbugs in your house by steam cleaning it, which is the professional way of getting rid of an infestation of bedbugs.
It is time for people to be aware of this fairly new threat to their well-being. The key things you can do are: acquaint yourself with what a bedbug looks like and have your clothes laundered at temperatures above 46c if you think that you may have been exposed to an infestation of bed bugs.
Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many subjects, but is currently concerned with bed bugs extermination. If you are interested in this, please visit our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more information.
There is a whole age bracket in the developed Western world that is coming in contact with bed bugs for the first time in their lives. The Baby Boomers of the Fifties and Sixties and their offspring have never seen bed bugs in their own countries, because bed bugs were practically exterminated in the West in the 1940′s and 1950′s through the widespread use of DDT to kill insects in general when the inner city ghettos were being cleared up after the Second World War. A comparable course of action went on in the United States.
This slum clearance and the destroying of insects encouraged the belief put about by rich people for decades that bed bugs went hand in glove with squalor and filth. However, it is not true and in fact the opposite could be the case. Cockroaches and ants will feed off dropped pieces of food, but bed bugs do not. Bed bugs only eat blood. If they see a piece of cheese on the floor, they do not think ‘yum, yum, I wonder if it is Cheddar?’, as a cockroach might, they walk around it and head for the nearest shapely ankle instead.
The resurgence in the population of bedbugs in the West since 1995 can almost definitely be blamed on the number of people making long-haul flights to Asia and Africa and more immigration from those continents. These people are not the poorest and dirtiest in the world. Immigrants are likely to be middle class to wealthy and long-distance flights are not made by the destitute either.
So, how do you know if you have bed bugs? Well, the answer to that is, it depends on your immune system. You could have them and never know it, if you are not allergic to bedbug spittle. People say that bedbugs come out at night, but in fact, they are most lively about an hour before sunrise.
Therefore, if you want to look for them, this is the time to do it. Set your alarm for an hour before sunrise and switch the light on immediately. They are very fast movers if they have not eaten, otherwise they are quite sluggish and ponderous.
They usually live near the bed. Either in the mattress if it is torn or behind the skirtings or wall paper. Bedbugs come in several colours, but the ones that only feed off humans, Cimex lectularius, are small (4-5 by 3.5 millimetres), brown, flat, but slightly rounded on top. They often look banded like a well-manicured lawn, because they have short hairs on their back. They are also without wings.
People think that bed bugs bite them in bed and this is true, but not only in bed. If you like to watch TV in your favourite armchair in the dark, they can get you there as well, which means that you are also at risk in the cinema. In fact you are at risk anyplace that people gather together: pubs, restaurants, buses, taxis, cinemas, hotels, motels, airplanes, nightclubs et cetera.
If you have bedbugs you may see red or brown flecks on your sheets, this is either your blood or their excrement. you may also find bedbug skins lying around. Bedbugs have to discard their skins six times in order to become fully mature. These skins look just like bedbugs but with nothing inside them.
Owen Jones, the author of this article, writes on many topics, but is at present concerned with how do you get bed bugs. If you are interested in this, please go over to our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for further details.
The revival of the population of bed bugs over the last fifteen years has been attributed to the increased number of people going on long-haul holidays and the enlarged amount of immigration from Asia and Africa. It is not that people carry the bed bugs back on their bodies, but bedbugs may have laid eggs in the travellers’ clothing or the bedbugs may have taken refuge in the luggage.
In this way they are taken home, and being very hardy to temperature change they prosper in their new home country. If the carriers are tourists, then the bedbugs could easily be unloaded into the hotel. This is how bed bugs can be dispersed unknowingly by humans.
You see, bed bugs do not prosper in a filthy environment necessarily. Bed bugs do not care whether you dropped a bit of potato on the floor last week and did not pick it up. They do not eat what we eat, even if they are famished. They only eat blood.
If you exist like this, then you will attract mice or rats, cockroaches and ants, but not bed bugs. It is a mistake to think that bedbugs like grime and rubbish. They most likely prefer it quite clean to be honest, but they do need cracks and crevices to hide in, but there are plenty of those in most rooms.
They like to wriggle behind the skirtings and other woodwork. They also like damaged plaster, loose wall paper and damaged mattresses. Because they are so flat, they can get into almost any crack. This means that any hotel can be infested with bedbugs, the Ritz, the Carlton, Holiday Inn – any of them.
This is the problem for us. If it was only run-down, dirty hotels that had bed bugs, we could avoid them, but you just cannot judge a book by its cover.
There are methods of checking your room though. Look out for small bugs that look a bit like an apple seed. Look in the seams of the chairs and inspect the mattress, if there are any rips in it, have it replaced.
You can also check by lying on the bed to warm it up and then toss back the bed clothes quickly. You may spot a few fleet-footed insects running for cover. They are bedbugs.
Obviously, the first thing you have to do is advise the hotel manager. If you are not content that he or she is taking you seriously, move or / and ring the environmental health department of the local council.
Whether you find bedbugs or not, they still may be about to hitch a ride home with you, so spray or dust your suitcase with a powerful pesticide before you travel home and to be really safe, have your clothes boil washed, because bedbugs cannot survive temperatures above 45c.
If you cannot arrange this on the last day of your vacation, make certain you do it when you get home, but make certain that you do not give anything you have brought with you a chance to get away and multiply.
Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many topics, but is at present involved with bed bugs extermination. If you are interested in this, please go over to our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more details.
Bed bugs are a growing source of aggravation, especially in the developed Western world, because bedbugs were largely wiped out there by the late 1950′s. This means that most people under 50 years of age had probably never seen a bedbug until after 1995, when they made a big return. Their numbers are still increasing quickly, so a lot people are turning to thinking about killing bed bugs.
This is due to two major factors: their natural hardiness and their resistance to modern household chemical pesticides. Their natural resilience is due to a waxy coating on their bodies which protects them from surfactant pesticides to a great extent and their tolerance to chemical pesticides is most likely due to the fact that they were exterminated in the West in the 1940′s and 1950′s by the widespread use of DDT.
The waxy coating of bedbugs prevents their rapid dehydration, which is why they can lie dormant for up to five months waiting for a suitable host to come along. It is also the reason why a lot of contact pesticides are ineffective. Therefore, one of the techniques for killing bed bugs is getting rid of that waxy coating.
People knew this 150 years ago, but they lacked the technology to really take advantage of the information. People often used to put down crushed dried leaves or sharp sand. In the 19th century, lime, ash and diatomaceous earth were utilized to wear away the outer waxy coating. The latter was especially effective and has seen an increase in usage over the last few years as an option to chemicals.
One method of killing bed bugs that will not work is catching them and crushing them, even if you did wrap sticky insect bands around the legs of your bed. Bed bugs cannot fly, but they would still get at you. They are not averse to traipsing up to the ceiling and dropping on to you.
If you want to try chemical insecticides, then there are three basic types. The first sort attempts to mimic the effects of diatomaceous earth. It is a spray that includes pulverized glass or silica mixed with a contact pesticide. This does not sound a healthy environment for humans or pets either though. Breathing powdered glass or silica seems like bad news.
Contact insecticides have limited effect, to a degree due to the waxy layer, but also because to be effective they have to be strong and this makes them a repellent, which means that the bedbugs will just avoid it if they can.
Insect growth regulators are effective at killing the young, which is great, but the adults can live for about a year, so that is not so good, unless you are thinking about a long world cruise.
Professionals frequently use steam these days, because none of the bed bug’s life stages can withstand temperatures above 45c, so you could try this technique by hiring a steam wall paper stripper or a hot air paint stripper for the weekend and going over your walls and woodwork. In fact, if all your wall paper and paint is going to fall off, you may as well combine the session with your next redecoration.
Owen Jones, the writer of this piece, writes on many subjects, but is at present concerned with bed bugs extermination. If you are interested in this, please go over to our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for further details.
The most recent invaders in New York are living proof that New York does go to sleep from time to time, because that is when these little nightmares come out to get you. It used to be rats that plagued New York, now it animals small enough to live on rats in their dozens. I am talking about Cimex lectularius, the bed bug that specializes in preying on people.
Nobody really knows how many species of bed bugs there are, some say seventy odd others say a hundred and odd. Most of them prefer animals, particularly birds and bats, but a lot of them will drink human blood if there is nothing else around. Cimex lectularius is the only one which prefers human blood and they have hit New York big time. They have literally got New Yorkers trembling in their beds.
The sad reality is that bed bugs were thought to have been wiped out in the United States in the 1950′s. Long-haul travellers and immigrants have been blamed for the sporadic outbursts of bedbugs in the past, but incidents of bedbugs has reached epidemic proportions. In 2004, there were only 82 attested infestations in New York, in 2009, just five years later, there were 10,985!
They are pretty swift creatures, preferring to live close to the host, they can make a withdrawal from your blood bank often within ten minutes, faster than you can make a withdrawal from an inner city ATM. The majority of bed bugs have drunk their fill within five minutes of finding you and they can find you very quickly. Bed bugs use body heat and CO2 emissions to locate their victims and then use pheromones to tell their friends and family where you are as well.
This is why a host is usually bitten a dozen times or more, not just once like when there is a single mosquito in your bedroom or three times, which is the mark of a flea. Like flea bites, bed bug bites are frequently in a row of three though.
Fortunately for us, bedbugs transmit no known diseases, although numerous bites can lead to anaemia and an impaired immune system, which could make you open to other diseases. Hosts sometimes develop obsessional behavioural patterns and insomnia, which also has its consequences.
Bedbugs are born from eggs, which are laid one, two or three a day. They take about ten days to hatch out into translucent nymphs about a millimetre or so long. These must also feed on blood. As they grow, they discard their skins. After six moultings they are mature bed bugs and can breed.
Bedbugs feed about every five days, during which time they rest in the dingy crevice that they call home and sleep it off. Their lifespan is between five months and a year, but they can become inactive for five months, if there is no food about. A female will lay about three hundred eggs in her life.
It used to be supposed that bedbugs lived in dirtiness, but this is not the case. However, they do like to be where humans assemble and they like dark crevices to live in: loose headboards, bed frames, skirting boards and architraves are definite favourites.
Owen Jones, the writer of this piece, writes on many subjects, but is at present concerned with getting rid of bedbugs? If you are interested in this, please visit our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for further information.
Bed bugs are a constant worry, if you suspect that they are in the bed with you. In fact, it is known that when people have been bitten often, they can become anxious, strained and obsessed. Insomnia soon follows. This predicament can quickly lead to irritability, domestic arguments and the loss of your job.
This obsession can obviously get out of hand unless you do something about it soon. If you are in a hotel, then you have to tell the manager immediately. If you are in rented accommodation, then your landlord has the responsibility to keep his property pest free, but if it is your own place, you have a problem. Or at least, you can get the issue sorted out, but it will cost you.
The Latin name for the species of bed bug that only drinks human blood is Cimex lectularius and they were first written about in Greece in about 400 BC. They did not arrive in Great Britain in large numbers until about 1670 and by 1726, they were in Jamaica and almost certainly the United States as well.
Bedbugs were exterminated from the developed world by and large by the late 1950′s due to the widespread use of pesticides such as DDT to constrain other household pests like ants and cockroaches.
Unfortunately|Regrettably, this has led to bedbugs being resistant to nearly all modern, domestic pesticides. The resurgence of bed bugs is blamed on increased foreign travel and higher levels of immigration from Asia and Africa.
It is generally believed that bedbugs only bite humans, but that is not right. Cimex lectularius only bites humans, but almost all warm-blooded animals have their own parasites, which could be called bedbugs.
Cats, dogs, deer, horses and birds (together with poultry) have their own bedbugs and these bed bugs will bite humans as well, if their preferred source of a blood meal is not around.
Bedbugs are quite small, being about a quarter of an inch long and a bit narrower. The are very flat and thin, so that they look as if they have been squashed. They are fairly agile when empty, but slow and cumbersome when swollen on blood.
They are most often brown in colour, bur they can be almost any shade, even white, until they have fed and then there is always at least a hint of red about them.
Bedbugs need to shed their skin six times before they become adult and can lay inactive for five months without food. They are aroused by body heat and CO2 and can signal their comrades that food is about by the discharge of pheromones.
Bedbugs prefer to live in narrow cracks and crevices. They like loose skirtings and architraves, damaged plaster and wall paper, ripped mattresses and loose joints in timber furniture. They will even hole up, quite literally, in a the sunken-screw hole – the countersink.
Bedbug bites often look like mosquito bites, but there is no red dot and they can take longer to come up and longer to go down and like flea bites, bedbug bites are often in a line of three.
Owen Jones, the writer of this article, writes on many subjects, but is at present concerned with bed bugs extermination. If you are interested in this, please visit our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more information.
‘Good Night, Sleep Tight, Don’t Let The Bed Bugs Bite’ is something that people said often to their children in the first half of the 20th Century. Some mothers still say it even now, but before they really meant it, because there were bed bugs – everywhere. Western cities were severely stricken with them and had been for three hundred years or longer.
Bed bugs were exterminated in the Forties and Fifties by the widespread use of DDT, which has since been prohibited. In 1995, reported cases of bed bug infestations rose sharply for the first time in fifty years. The number of bed bug incidents has been increasing ever since. Therefore, the saying ‘Good Night, Sleep Tight, Don’t Let The Bed Bugs Bite’ has become pertinent again.
The trouble is that it is very, very hard to prevent them biting and it is almost as hard to eradicate them, because modern bedbugs have become almost totally resistant to the pesticides that we have on hand to us today.
Scientists in several companies are working on chemicals to kill bedbugs, but as of yet, there has not been a lot of advancement. Pharaoh ant venom is lethal to bedbugs, but it is proving tricky to manufacture in suitable volumes.
If you suspect that you have bed bugs, you will probably have seen a few bugs, have had a few bites or have seen bedbug droppings. Bed bugs are small, brown, wingless insects about three-sixteenths of an inch long and a little rounded on top although their general appearance is flattish.
Bedbug bites frequently result in bumps, which may come up up to nine days after you were bitten. Occasionally they are in rows of three like flea bites. They are usually itchy. Bed bug droppings are brown. They often look like brown streaks on a sheet.
If you have bedbugs, there is not a lot you can do yourself. Bedbugs do not necessarily live in squalid conditions. However, they do like untidiness, because it provides more hiding places. If you have had books, magazines or clothes lying in the same place for weeks, move them to see if bedbugs come out.
If you are in hired accommodation, get in touch with your landlord. If you own your own home, you have a big problem. The first move should be to check with your local heath authorities for the phone number of a reputable, experienced, professional pest controller.
While you are waiting for them to come round, tidy away all your clutter and strip your beds. Bedbugs, in all their forms, are killed by temperatures above 46C (120F), so either put your clothes on a boil wash or put them in the clothes dryer on a hot temperature.
A competent pest controller will inspect your property thoroughly and give you a detailed report and a price tag. The report will include an action plan of how to get ready for treatment and prevent further infestation. The price of the clean-up should be based on this report, it should not be a flat fee.
Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many topics, but is currently concerned with how do you get bed bugs? If you are interested in this, please go over to our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more information.
It is doubtful that you grew up with bed bugs and the chances of you having come across one over the last fifteen years is still reasonably slender, but the chances are increasing. In some parts of the world’s inner cities, the incidence of bed bug encounters has risen by up to 100% per annum since the year 2000. Another report says that of 700 hotels surveyed, twenty-five percent of them had issues relating to bedbug infestation.
The key problem with bed bugs is their detection. Not everyone has a reaction to bed bug bites and if they do, it can take up to nine days to develop. That means that you could easily reprimand a hotel for the infestation, when you were bitten thousands of miles away on a different continent.
This can be a real difficulty if you travel a great deal. Then there is the fact that bedbug bites are not easily discernible. There is no red mark in the middle of the swelling as with mosquito bites, but they are frequently in rows of three, just like flea bites.
The good news is that although bedbugs are capable of passing on human diseases, they never have done so far to date. However, it is a frightening possibility, if it ever were to happen.
The bad news is that they are hardly affected by normal domestic insecticides. This is because bed bugs have become virtually immune to the average insecticides available on the shelf in your supermarket. Bedbugs also have a waxy top coat, which inhibits surfactant pesticides from being totally successful in destroying them.
Therefore, the most successful bedbug killers attempt to scrape off this waxy top coat. Some bedbug sprays do this by incorporating powered glass or powdered silica, which attaches itself to that waxy coat. As the insect wriggles itself into narrow crevices, the powder abrades the wax. This then allows the pesticides to do their job. The downside of this methodology is that it will take several days to get rid of them.
Professional bedbug exterminators use steam to get rid of an infestation these days. This is because no stage of the bed bug’s life, egg, nymph or adult can survive temperatures above 45c. If you want to try getting rid of your bedbugs yourself, you could hire a wall paper steam stripper or buy a hot air paint stripper. These will produce a temperature sufficient to destroy bedbugs.
The locations where bedbugs like to go into hiding are behind loose skirtings and architraves, in cracks in plaster and behind tears in wall paper. Their number one favourite of all time though is inside a ripped or torn mattress. They like to be as near to their victims as they can, which is something to keep in mind, when you go looking for bed bugs’ hiding places.
The other way of solving your bed bug problem is to call in the experts. This is also the best, if the most expensive, method of doing it, but at least you will know that your bedbug problem is over and you should have a guarantee too.
Owen Jones, the author of this piece, writes on many subjects, but is currently involved with bed bugs spray. If you are interested in this, please visit our website now at Picture Of Bed Bugs for more details.