Ghosties and ghoulies and long-legged beasties and things that go bump in the night. Of all the horrors that your bedroom could face, the bed bug is the most likely. Everyone has heard of them and nobody wants them, but what exactly are they? How do you know if you have bed bugs? And how can you get rid of them? That’s what we’re going to discuss in this blog.
What are bed bugs?
Cimicidae – AKA bed bugs – are small parasitic insects. They live in and around beds and they emerge at night to suck your blood. In short, they’re not very pleasant, and you don’t want to have them in your home. When fully grown, they’re about the size of an apple seed, oval in shape, and flat. That may not sound too difficult to spot, but the hatchlings are so tiny that they can easily disappear through the weave of a mattress. This makes detection tricky, because they don’t have to be fully grown to start feasting on you, and their bites are easily mistaken for other insects.
So, if they’re so tiny and hard to spot, how do you know if you’ve got bed bugs?
Inspecting for bed bugs
While bed bugs might be pretty good at hiding themselves, they’re not so great at covering their tracks. So, finding out if you’ve got them is pretty easy – as long as you know what you’re looking for. And what you’re looking for in this case, is excrement… Sorry! Bed bugs have to go, just like every other animal, so the easiest way to tell if you have a bed bug problem is to spot their droppings.
What you’re looking for is a cluster of dark brown or black spots. It can look a bit like a squashed fly at a glance, but if there’s more than one you can be pretty sure that it’s bed bugs. You’ll usually find them in mattresses, headboards, box springs and bed frames. They will also migrate to other furniture within about 8 feet of the bed, carpet edges, floor, wall and window moldings and any other cracks and crevices nearby.
If you need further confirmation, just follow your nose. The bed bug gives off a sweet, slightly musty odor. It can be subtle though, if you’re not dealing with big numbers, or you have a large home. That’s why we use a team of highly trained dogs to help us identify areas affected by bed bugs – our professionals might be experts in their field, but you just can’t beat a K-9 nose!
What to do if you think you have bed bugs?
You can get rid of a bed bug infestation yourself, but you’ve got to be willing to put in the hard yards. Insecticides are available in hardware stores and online. You can find the safety equipment there too – be uber careful if you have kids or pets. BUT diligence is everything. Because if you miss just one or two bugs, then you’re right back where you started. Your best option is to contact a pest control specialist.
At Noosa Pest Management, we’ll be happy to discuss a range of possible options for you and your family.
Call us: 704-499-9922
We’re always happy to help.