Bedbugs

bedbug actual size
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What are bed bugs?

• Bed bugs are insects that feed on humans and other warm-blooded animals.

• These insects are wingless, reddish-brown in color and as adults are about one fourth (¼) of an inch in length.

• Bed bugs appear oval and flattened from top to bottom.

• Immature bed bugs (nymphs) are usually lighter in color but otherwise resemble adults.

Where are bed bugs found?

• Bed bugs are most frequently found in dwellings with a high rate of occupant turnover, such as hotels, motels, hostels, dormitories, shelters, apartment complexes, rooming houses and prisons.

• Adult bed bugs are normally found hiding in cracks and crevices near sleeping areas during the day and come out at night to feed.

• Bed bugs can initially be found about the tufts, seams and folds of mattresses.

• Bed bug eggs are normally found in cracks and crevices and behind loose wallpaper.

What are signs of bed bug infestation?

• Blood-stained sheets and bedding.

• Dark colored excrement spots on areas where they hide during the day.

• Heavily infested areas have a “musty” odor similar to that of large cockroach infestations. A female bed bug may lay 200-500 eggs during her life time, usually in batches of 10-50 eggs. An infestation of bed bugs does not necessarily mean your dwelling is not clean and/or sanitary.

How are bed bugs spread?

• Bed bug infestations are spread by contact with infested persons or use of infested sleeping areas.

• International travel is thought to aid the spread because eggs, nymphs and adult bed bugs are transported in luggage, clothing, bedding and furniture.

How do you control bed bug infestation?

• Control is best achieved through sound sanitation practices such as:

-Frequent vacuuming of mattresses and dwelling. (After vacuuming immediately place the vacuum bag in a plastic bag, seal tightly and discard properly in a garbage container outside of the dwelling.)

-Laundering of bedding and clothing in hot water.

-Cleaning and sanitizing dwelling.

• Mattress and box springs can be permanently encased within special mattress bags.

• To prevent bed bugs from crawling onto a bed, pull the bed frame away from the wall, then tuck in sheets and blankets so they do not contact the floor.

• Repair cracks in plaster and glue down loosened wall paper.

Can bed bug bites cause disease?

• Bed bugs have never been shown to transmit disease.

• Bites appear as small, whitish, hardened areas surrounded by a larger swollen area.

• Constant scratching of these bites may result in secondary infection.

• Persons should consult a physician if they think they may have been bitten by bed bugs.

Pesticide Reminder:

• If you use pesticides read and follow all directions on the label before using.

• Remember that pesticides are poisonous and should always be used and stored properly and as per the manufacturers’ recommendations.

• It is strongly recommended that treatments for bed bug infestations be conducted by a licensed New Jersey pesticide applicator.

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