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Evidence of Bed Bugs

By Chris Williams on February 3, 2014.
Bed bug on human hand

Question

How do I know if there are Bedbugs in my bed. Radio commercials say that one in every five homes has a bed bug infestation. Are there any sings of bedbugs that I should look for? Can you even see bedbugs? I’m itchy just thinking about this.

Answer

That is an excellent question! Bedbugs are in fact more common than you think. Our Pest Control company has had a steady stream of bedbug related work over the last ten years. We have seen the rise in bedbug activity and have become experts in finding these secretive insect pests.

Like any insect, they have the basic life requirements: food, reproduction, harborage(hiding place), and excretion. Bedbugs also must molt, or shed their skins, and lay eggs.

Most infestations of bedbugs have similar symptoms. It usually starts with some type of bite, although this may be attributed to spiders, dry skin , or something else at first. Adult bedbugs are about the size of a watermelon seed, tan to dark brownish in color.

Nymphs are very small an are tan with a dark spot after feeding on human blood. Some people are more sensitive to insect bites, while others may have little or no reaction to the bedbug saliva (Bedbugs secrete an anesthetic/anticoagulant in their saliva as they feed). Blood stains, dead bedbugs, and infection may result from scratching while sleeping. Once a blood meal has been obtained, the bedbug travels directly back to it’s hiding place.

Along the way, undigested blood (fecal stains) accumulate. Fecal stains resemble black ink dots, and may even be smeared in the direction of the bedbugs movement. Bedbugs must shed their skins as part of the development process. Nymphs must feed each time they molt, and the previous skins are left behind.

Cast skins, which look like “popcorn hulls”, can also be a clue to bedbug infestation. Fecal stains, cast skins, and the small white banana shaped eggs may all be clustered together where the bedbugs hide(corner of mattress by feet), Bedbugs also die naturally. Dead bedbugs may be found in spider webs, dust balls, tape or under carpets. Careful inspection is the key to determining if there is a bedbug infestation.

Pest Control Professionals may be able to find out if something is biting you. In most cases of biting insects, the culprit can be identified, and some type of treatment or management program can be instituted to remedy the problem. If you think you have a biting insect, other pest problem, let a Pest Control Professional take a look first!

Photo credit: agrilifetoday / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

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