What Makes Bed Bugs so Tough to Kill?

Written By: Admin

Archive For: May 2012

Category Name: bed bugs

Bed bugs are, unfortunately, some of the most resilient household pests, up there with cockroaches and termites in terms of their ability to breed and survive in the most hostile conditions. For millennia people have searched for ways to rid their homes of bed bugs, trying everything from smoking them out to stuffing the mattress with poisonous leaves. It wasn’t until the early 20th century that effective pesticides were developed and virtually cleansed the developed world of bed bugs. However, many of the pesticides that were effective back then have since been banned due to their toxicity to humans, and new ones have been hard to come by.

Because the developed world spent several decades living bed bug free, most modern pesticides are ineffective against them. While there are a few pest control methods that work against bed bugs (most notably pyrethroids), recent reports indicate they might be becoming resistant to these modern poisons. So, bed bug infestations are on the rise all over the US, and they are getting harder and harder to kill. But what makes bed bugs so hard to get rid of? There are actually a number of reasons – bed bugs possess several traits that each help them survive tough conditions, and combined together make them extremely robust.

They can hide anywhere and survive up to a year

One of the main ways bed bugs traveled the world was hiding in wood – most famously, many London residents blamed the importation of wood used to rebuild after the fire of London in 1666 for their bed bug infestations, which started soon after. This is highly likely as bed bugs are known to be able to survive up to a year without food (mammal’s blood), and can squeeze themselves into any tiny space to hide (such as the uneven surface of wood). So, while you may be aiming your bed bug control efforts at areas near your bed, you may find that there are a few left hiding behind your light fixtures, or inside your electrical items, or virtually anywhere in your house. And a few is all that is needed for an infestation, due to their ability to breed.

They can breed easily and in huge numbers

Female bed bugs can lay over 300 eggs in their lifetimes, and there can be up to four generations of bed bugs produced each year. Unfortunately, the optimum temperature for bed bugs to start breeding is closely matched to the temperature of many houses (72 to 82 degrees F), although they can still breed effectively in highly varied temperatures if they have to. They are also one of the few animals that can mate with close family members without the offspring experiencing any negative effects. Altogether, this means that even if there are even two bed bug eggs remaining hidden after your pest control efforts, there could easily be thousands by next year.

What can be done about them?

While it is possible to get rid of a bed bug infestation using a pest control agency (although expensive and time consuming), prevention is a much better way to go. Because bed bugs have not been a problem for the past few decades, preventative methods have been largely forgotten – allowing this decade’s recent bed bug infestations to spread rapidly.

The first thing to remember is that bed bugs don’t travel on people like tics and lice do – they rarely stay on people’s bodies for more than 10 minutes – instead they travel on furniture and other household items. The best preventive measure is to simply be very careful about what second-hand items you bring into your home (and items you have been recently traveling with), making sure you fumigate anything that could possibly harbor these bugs. Becoming aware of what the early signs of a bed bug infestation look like can help as well. In the early stages an infestation is far easier to get rid of than an established group.

http://www.epa.gov/bedbugs/

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11915026/ns/dateline_nbc-dont_let_the_bed_bugs_bite/t/what-you-need-know-about-bed-bugs/#.UAUG_PWcGuI

http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/bedbugs/faqs.html

A short history of bed bugs

Written By: Admin

Archive For: April 2012

Category Name: bed bugs

Bed bugs are some of humanity’s oldest and most reviled pests, with a history stretching back into prehistory. This decade, bed bugs have been experiencing an unfortunate renaissance in many parts of the developed world, so it is a good time to look at the long history of man’s uncomfortable relationship with these blood-sucking insects.

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How to prevent bed bugs from invading your home

Written By: Admin

Archive For: September 2011

Category Name: bed bugs

Bed bugs are increasingly become a nuisance in different homes around the Austin area. This is because they can be easily transported from one home to another in suitcases or even clothes, and are also resistant to many conditions that many pests would not be able to survive in. Bed bugs are also inactive during the day and only come out at night to prey on their victims thus making it hard to spot them.

We have already established that bed bugs can make an easy entry into your home but can be a nightmare to eradicate. It is important to be aware of the sign that indicate that bed bugs have invaded your home. Bed bugs are small insects that have a flat oval body and are reddish brown in color and they leave blood spots as well as dark fecal stains after feeding. You can also find light brown shells that bed bugs shed as they grow. If you see none of these signs in your home then you are still safe and should put up measures to make sure they never invade your home.

Steps to preventing bed bugs in your home

Bed bugs like to hide in warm places that have human contact almost all the time. These places include mattresses, furniture, pillows, carpeting, chairs as well as dressers and should be inspected regularly to prevent an infestation.

Regularly treat your furniture with insecticides to prevent any bed bugs from hiding and breeding there and you can use either insecticide spray or powder or a combination of both for the best results. Also get rid of any old furniture as a preventive measure so that there is no chance of the bed bugs multiplying in case they had already infested the furniture.

Identify, seal and repair any crevices in your home to prevent any bugs from having access into your home. This also goes for the windows which should be repaired as soon as they have a defect so as to prevent any bugs or animals that might have bed bugs on them to enter into the house.

If it is possible cover all the mattresses in the home with plastic paper as one of the most favorite hiding places for bed bugs are mattresses and the plastic covering can also be done on selected chairs as well.

Ultimately, a house that is cleaned regularly and checked for bed bugs is likely to avoid a bed bug infestation for a long time.

 

 

Do It Yourself tips to get rid of bed bugs in your Austin home

Written By: Admin

Archive For: August 2011

Category Name: bed bugs

When bedbugs have infested a home it can be a nightmare because they will prey on both humans and pets alike making life very uncomfortable in the house. Bedbugs are spread in different ways and no one can really know how the bedbugs got into their home in the first place.  If you have already seen the sign of a bed bug infestation in your home you can either decide to call in a professional or deal with the bedbugs on your own

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