In order to avoid an infestation in your home, early detection is key. Although bed bugs are difficult to spot, there are a few key techniques you can use to see if there are any lingering in your home. With a trained eye and knowledge of bed bug behaviour, at Six Brothers Pest Control we know that these techniques for early detection can save you the expensive and time-consuming procedure of professional bed bug treatment or at least in the early stage of the infestation.
1. Identifying Bed Bugs
Identifying the critter as a bed bug is the first step to early detection.
Bed bugs are small (3-5mm is the size of an adult), wingless pests that are typically brown in color and with flat bodies. After feeding, bed bugs will bulk up and take on a darker color. The bugs are oval in shape and are typically as wide as they are long, which is approximately 1/4’’. Immature bed bugs, or nymphs, look much like adults but are much smaller and lighter in color. Newly hatched nymphs are usually translucent and harder to spot. Bed bug eggs are very small, often 1mm long, and white. The experts at 247 bed bug control say eggs are well hidden from plain sight, which on top of their size and colour makes them almost impossible to spot. Well, almost, with the help of a magnifying glass you stand a chance.
Look deep between the cushions of your sofa, or under the frame of your bed, somewhere in a corner. You will spot a small grouping of a couple of eggs. Good thing mother bed bug is not acting like the Easter bunny, because that would make her eggs impossible to spot.
2. Where to Look
Although bed bugs infest mostly bedding, hence their name, they can also infest a number of other items in your home. Knowing where to look for these pesky critters will make the process of detection much easier. Here are some of the commonly infested areas and units:
- Power outlets
- Cracks in walls and floors
In order to perform a thorough inspection for bed bugs, check all of the above not just in your bed.
When looking in these areas, use a flashlight and a magnifying glass in order to spot bed bugs as they might be immature or still in their eggs which is why they are so hard to spot. The property buyer Tom Davies says that it’s absolutely mandatory to perform a complete check of any second-hand items you plan to bring to your home. Bed bugs often enter a property through these second-hand units, so be sure to check such inside and out. Pay attention to all the crannies and wholes where eggs could fit. The brand new sofa you found right down the street could turn into a Trojan horse if you are not paying enough attention and giving it much of a thought before you carry it back to your home.
It’s also important to look at the carpet, especially next to walls and furniture. We recommend that if you see bed bugs, call a carpet cleaning service to come out and get it cleaned. That way any fleas, bed bugs, or carpet beetles are properly taken care of before they spread.
Now, we won’t say that you should not benefit from a situation like that. Who would pass on a free couch if it is in a good condition and you like it? But, please, carefully check and don’t risk on chance.
3. Interception Traps
Unlike other pests, where there are many natural ways to fight, like fire ants, sometimes you have to wait for bed bugs to catch themselves. A good example are the wide-spread interception devices. They are a great way to see if bed bugs are wandering through your home and can usually detect the presence of bed bugs within a few weeks of placement. Bed bugs feed at night and will migrate to and from their host.
Since your bed is the most common place to will find bed bugs, placing interception traps at the base of bed legs. That’s how traps catch bed bugs that are trying to climb on and have a snack.
These units capture bed bugs in a pool of water that stands in a shallow bowl. Another key benefit of interception devices is that they use no harmful chemicals to capture the critters. This is especially important due to the close proximity of these devices to you.
4. However, that won’t save you if pests are living in your mattress.
As a matter of fact, if they are really deeply settled inside there, it is best to just buy a new one and throw the old one away. Make sure that your new mattress will arrive after your property was treated for bed bugs. Give it a fresh start.
Bed bugs may be difficult to spot with an untrained eye, but if you know what you are looking for and where to look for it, you will have a much easier time detecting them in your home. After you perform a thorough inspection of the problem areas, you should also consider placing interception devices where bed bugs paths. Those traps are not a permanent solution! If you have any suspicions about your home being infested with bed bugs, call in a professional pest control technician to evaluate your situation. Act promptly, because when you catch the infestation at an early stage, it is obviously way easier to deal with.
A severe infestation on multiple pieces of furniture might leave you with no sofa, mattress and a hefty bill for professional services. On top of that, you will most likely need a heat treatment from a bed bug exterminator, which is one of the most expensive. At least it is most effective and you would know that your troubles have come to an end.
According to Adrian Leary, a mattress expert at Revival, more than 17% of their sales in the UK are due to replacements for bed bug infested beds.
Don’t rush in into a fight of your own, for it might only prolong your suffering. That’s is why a professional service is the answer.
Bed bugs are extremely hard to deal with! Back in the 16th and 17th-century people were burning their beds, just to get rid of them once and for all. Act with caution or you risk the nightmare you could otherwise, easily avoid.