K9 BED BUG DETECTION AND PEST CONTROL SERVICES HAMILTON – TORONTO
Bedbugs – What are they?
Bedbugs are small, wingless insects that feed on the blood of people and animals while they sleep. They are easily moved from room to room on infested objects. Bedbugs cannot easily climb metal or polished surfaces and cannot fly or jump.
Adult bedbugs can be as long as 10 mm. They have an oval, broad, flat body and a short, broad head. Adult bedbugs are brown, but darken to a blood red colour after feeding. Young bedbugs are shaped like adults, but are smaller (1.5 mm long) and lighter in colour. They also darken after feeding. Bedbug eggs are white, about one millimeter long, and are almost impossible to see on most surfaces. The female bedbug lays at least 200 eggs in her lifetime, at a rate of about two to four each day. The eggs have a sticky coating and are laid in cracks and crevices, behind woodwork and other hidden locations. They usually hatch in 6 to 17 days. K9 Bed Bug Detection Services Toronto & Hamilton.
How they feed and live
Bedbugs come out at night to feed, attracted by the carbon dioxide we exhale. They will feed on both people and pets. Bedbug bites may not be noticed right away because bedbugs typically feed at night when people are asleep.
Bedbugs prefer locations where they can hide easily and feed regularly, like sleeping areas. Their flattened bodies allow bedbugs to hide in extremely small locations: under wallpaper, behind picture frames, in electrical outlets, inside box springs, in mattress pads, and in night tables.
Newly hatched bedbugs feed as soon as food is available. Bedbugs can live from several weeks to up to a year and a half without feeding. Older bedbugs can go even longer without feeding.
Adults usually live for around 10 months, but can live for a year or more in a home where the environment is good for reproduction (with temperatures ranging between 21°C and 28°C).
Bedbug bites A bedbug bite can take as long as 14 days to appear, depending on the person. While bites can happen anywhere on the skin, they are often found on the face, neck, arms, legs, and chest.
Some people do not react at all to the bites, while others may have small skin reactions. In rare cases, some people may have severe allergic reactions. To avoid infection, try not to scratch the bites and keep the bite sites clean. Using antiseptic creams or lotions, as well as antihistamines, may help. Talk to your health care provider for advice.
Prevention is the key to avoiding bedbug infestations in your home. To reduce the chances of an infestation, follow these steps:
Reduce places where bedbugs can hide
- Get rid of clutter.
- Vacuum often, including under and behind beds.
- Repair or remove peeling wallpaper and tighten loose electrical faceplates.
- Seal all cracks and crevices on wooden bed frames, between baseboards, and in walls, ceilings, windows, door frames, and furniture.
- Check any entry points on walls that you share with neighbours, and openings that allow access to the inside of the wall (like areas where pipes, wires and other utility services enter).
Be careful about what you bring into your house or buy
- Check every item you bring into your home for the first time, including used books, new furniture, and garage sale or antique store furniture.
- Be very cautious with second-hand or refurbished items.
- New mattresses are often delivered in the same truck that carries away old mattresses, so be careful to check your new mattress before it enters your home. Insist that your new mattress be sealed before it is delivered.
- Never take a mattress or sofa from a curb.
- Check items before you put them in your vehicle and check your vehicle after helping a friend move.
Check your home regularly for bedbugs
Regular inspection is important to prevent infestations. To thoroughly inspect your home, you will need a few simple tools:
- something to scape along mattress seams and other crevices (like an old credit card cut into a long triangle: use it in a sweeping motion in narrow spaces to chase bedbugs out of hiding)
- screwdrivers for removing electrical faceplates and taking furniture apart (always be sure the power is turned off before opening an electrical outlet)
- alcohol, glass-cleaner, or baby wipes for checking if stains are bedbug droppings (if spots dissolve into a reddish brown colour when rubbed, the spots could be bedbug droppings)
- cotton swabs for checking stains in crevices
- white plastic bags that can be sealed, for your belongings
Check on, under and beside beds, couches and upholstered furniture. Look for black/brown spots (dried blood or feces), white spots (eggs – very hard to see), or live or dead bedbugs.
If you find signs of bedbugs, you should carefully widen the area of your inspection. If you have a pet, check areas where your pet sleeps as well.