It would be more than easy to simply write off finding a couple of pests in the home. People find flies, mosquitoes
, and sometimes ladybugs
in the home daily and don’t think twice about it. You just remove these bugs and go about your business as usual.
This might not be a problem when dealing with those types of bugs, but the bed bug is an entirely different pest altogether. It’s not only more elusive and wittier, but it could potentially be much more problematic.
There is no other way to put it, finding a single bed bug
in or around the property spells major problems ahead. Your problem could go from bad to worse if that bug you found is of the female variety. While these bugs are extremely elusive and small, you can distinguish the males from the females.
Why A Single Bug Is A Risk
Finding a single bed bug
in the home might not seem like a big deal to many. However, that’s not the case at all. The major reason for this is because these bugs avoid detection. The bed bug
will change their schedule to opposite that of their host.
For instance, if you are a day sleeper, these bugs will learn to sleep and stay hidden during the night while you are active. Then they’ll emerge and feed during the day while you are asleep. So, you can now imagine why seeing one bug is such a problem. It either means you’ve just gotten incredibly lucky, or the population has grown so large the bugs are inadvertently exposing themselves.
In addition to this, the bed bug
is a social invader. While they do not reside in nests, they do live in groups of varying sizes. They also do everything as a colony, including traveling and feeding.
Why Spotting Bed Bugs Are Such A Problem
You’ll hear a lot of people, including professional pest management employees, say that locating a bed bug
infestation is one of the hardest parts of the process. This should be obvious, given that the bugs go out of their way to avoid detection.
However, that’s just a fraction of the problem. These bugs are also tiny, only about the size of an apple seed with a slender profile. They are also reddish-brown and blend in easily with common household surroundings. To make matters even worse, not everyone reacts to the bites. The bite marks are one of the best ways to determine an infestation. But if bite marks aren’t showing up, you simply won’t know you have an infestation.
How To Know You Have A Bed Bug Problem
With the above in mind, because you’re waking up with bites marks, it doesn’t necessarily mean you are dealing with bed bugs. Mosquitoes
, and mites all bite as well. They also bite in similar locations on the body and the bites produce the same red welts.
Regardless, this only makes matters all that more difficult. Therefore, it is pertinent to learn how to properly identify and spot a bed bug infestation. Here are some of the common signs you’ll want to keep an eye out for.
- Bloodstains – The bed bug is a parasitic invader, meaning it is natural for it to feed on human blood. This is a process that sometimes leaves droplets behind. Since feedings take place in the bed, you’ll likely find these droplets on the sheets.
- Exoskeletons – Like a lot of common insects, the bed bug will shed its skin. When it goes through this transformation, it will leave behind clear, delicate, near-translucent skins. Keep an eye out for these near feeding sites.
- Eggs/Egg Casings – Finding eggs and egg casings are never ideal, as it means there are more bugs on the way or recently hatched bugs. Either way, it’s a bad situation, but spotting these pinpoint-sized eggs is a surefire sign of an infestation.
- Fecal Matter – The need for bowel movements always comes along after feedings. While this is unpleasant, it is something that will take place near the feeding site. Keep an eye out for black, inkblot-like stains on the sheets.
- Bite Marks – Unfortunately, not everyone reacts to bed bug bites, but when you do, they will show up in the form of red welts. Bed bug bites usually only appear on exposed parts of the body.
- Musty, Sweet Odors – When dealing with larger infestations it is not uncommon to catch musty, soda pop syrup-like scents. These smells come from the bug’s scent glands.
Searching For Bed Bugs In Your Home
At the first sign of bed bugs, it is always advisable to get a pest management professional involved. The reason for this is because the potential to make matters worse is far too great. However, this does not mean there aren’t things the average homeowner can’t do. With the right approach and information, a common homeowner can begin the search for bed bugs and even get the elimination process started.
First, you’ll want to start by moving the bed along with the bedroom furniture a few feet away from any walls. This will allow you to dictate the path in which the bugs travel to the mattress. Keep in mind, this will only work for the bugs that haven’t already taken up residence in the mattress. With the mattress relocated away from the walls, you’ll now be able to place traps under the feet of the bed and furniture. This forces the bugs to enter the traps on their way to the mattress.
In addition to this, you can also strip the pillowcases and sheets and wash them in hot water. Follow this up with a drying session on the highest heat setting, and you’ll have most of your problems cleared up.
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