Pest Control Sydney – What are Bed bugs?
Growing up my mother always use to kiss me goodnight and say to me “goodnight don’t let the bedbugs bit” now back then I truly thought bed bugs were these mythical bugs that climb into bed if we were being naughty.
These days I now know that bed bugs are not mythical but a true bug that feeds on the human blood.
Bed bugs known by scientific name Cimex Lectularius need a human host to feed on otherwise they won’t survive.
Bedbugs are a brownish red colour and are roughly four to six mm long, adults will have wing pads but does not have the ability to fly, the wing pads help them jump from place to place. Bedbugs mouthparts are designed to pierce the skin and feed on their host, they have long antennae, with six legs and clawed feet for them to easily climb over objects.
The life cycle for a bedbug!
For every female bed bug, you have she can lay up to 12 eggs a day, that is up to 500 eggs per her lifetime.
Eggs are the shape and size of a tiny grain of white rice but being translucent makes it hard to see the eggs.
The female bed bug will burrow her eggs in the cracks and crevices she can find so they will survive.
Once the eggs have been deposited in the cracks and crevices they will hatch roughly 10 days later, once this happen they will be now known as Nymphs.
With nymph bed bugs, they will have five stages they go through which are called instars.
The first instar is translucent then will turn in to a creamy colour then as they progress they will turn into a more darkish colour.
The nymph bed bug cycle can take up to eight weeks and will develop their wing pads around the last month or so.
Adult bed bugs can live to around six months in the perfect environment and here is something even scarier bed bugs can live to around two months without feeding on a host.
Unfortunately, bed bugs do not discriminate and will go to the cleanest of homes as their only source of food is a blood meal from a host.
But how do we get bed bugs?
Usually when you travel or pick up second hand furniture or clothes they can hitchhike a ride and set up residency in your home.
They start off in the room that you place the items you have bought home then over time with the bed bugs jumping from place to place other rooms can then also be affected.
Here are some signs of infestation!
• excrement – blood or faecal spotting on mattresses and linen.
• live or dead bed bugs and cast skins in surrounding areas and on mattresses and linen.
• bed bug eggs on mattresses and linen. Also in cracks and crevices.
• distinctive odour in the rooms affected.
What are some hints for me to do before a pest controller comes out?
• Grab a flashlight and go around and check along the mattress seams, cracks, and crevices in and around the bed, skirting boards, behind dressers, paintings, windowsills, and any other furniture you may have in that room.
• You will need to vacuum all areas of the affected room including the mattress. Once finished empty the vacuum bag into a plastic bag and dispose of it in your outside bin ( this is vital). You need to vacuum several times over the next few days or so.
• Do a good clean on your room and remove any clutter that bed bugs may hide in.
• Clean out your wardrobe, dresser and bedside tables as bed bugs love to hide in furniture too. With the clothes that you have removed from this furniture wash those in hot water with eucalyptus oil than put these clothes in a tumble dryer to dry. If you don’t have a tumble dryer you can put them on the clothesline. Once dry put in large plastic bags and put in a sunny spot or you can even freeze these items for 20 minutes to an hour.
• Grab bedding and curtains and wash them with eucalyptus oil.
• If you have a steam cleaner please steam all cracks and crevices around the affected room as this will help moisten the eggs from being stuck to the fibres.
• If you can put your mattress outside in the sun for 2 – 4 hours. (it must be a 30 degree plus day for this to be effective)
• Wipe down all surfaces in the affected room with eucalyptus oil diluted with water, we have also found that lavender and tea tree oil also works a treat.
Bed Bugs and what you can do!
pest control sydney – What are bed bugs?