Bed bugs are the sort of pest that might not cross your mind unless you are travelling around the world, but rather than being a thing of the past bed bugs are actually increasing in the UK and becoming a real pest control problem.
While bed bugs were once a common pest problem in the UK, they had largely been eliminated from homes, but an increase in travel has seen a fairly rapid rise in reports of local infestations in Birmingham, Manchester, London, Bristol and across many parts of the UK.
How quickly can bed bugs spread?Bed bugs are one of the worst pests! They thrive by sucking blood from human hosts. They are nocturnal creatures which mean that they feast on our blood when we sleep. Even though they can’t pass serious disease to humans, their bites and their presence, in general, can lead to allergic reactions. In addition, their bites also cause itching similar to the one experienced after a mosquito bite. Bed bugs are very difficult to detect and they can survive for weeks without eating. If there is bed bug infestation, homeowners must look for professional help. But, how quickly can bed bugs spread?
When it comes to the outdoors, these bugs often infest nests made by bats, birds, and other animals. Bed bugs are about ¼ inches long which means that they can easily penetrate our homes. They can also enter hotels, guest houses, and apartment buildings. When they find a suitable spot for a living they start procreating.
This reproduction process is very quick. A female bed bug can lay up to five small eggs in one day. Their hatchlings have a size similar to a poppy seed. When they finally hatch, the new bed bugs need just one “portion” of blood to enter their next phase of development. After about one month, bed bugs reach maturity which means that they can start procreating too. On average, one female bed bug can create a second generation of bugs that number nearly 200 bugs.
These pests can easily spread from one area to another. They use the cracks and holes in the ceilings, walls, and floors and they go through windows and door frames. It is not uncommon to find them in recesses and cracks where they usually lay eggs.
How to spot a bed bug
Despite their name, you can actually find bed bugs pretty much anywhere. It is common to find bed bugs on mattresses, bedding and furniture but they can also be found in fittings and personal items, such as suitcases and children’s toys.
However, it is their habit of feeding on the blood of people as they sleep that has earned them the name ‘bed bugs’. Seeing the human body as a food source they will take blood as people sleep in bed, leaving small bite marks where they have fed.
As they can go up to 10 days without feeding, bed bugs will often not be found in the bed but in the surrounding area – which makes getting rid of them difficult.
The most obvious sign that you may have a bed bugs infestation is the appearance of small red insect bites on your body. These can be quite numerous and itchy.
In addition to bites, you may see spots of blood or brown spots on the bed.
Where do bedbugs come from?
Bed bugs are generally picked up when travelling, which is why the rise in travel has largely been blamed for the rise in bedbugs. Hotels and hostels are usually the places where people will pick up bedbugs then, unknowingly bring them home with them, either in their clothes or suitcase.
Although the risk extends to any public space where bedbugs may have become established, including public transport and even aeroplanes.
Insect Control – How to get rid of bedbugs
Once you have spotted the signs of a bedbug infestation the only sensible action is to seek help from a professional pest control service as they are so difficult to find and remove.
You will also have to wash bedding and clothes on a high heat – or freeze them to kill any bedbugs.
To minimise your chance of exposure, keep your sleeping area clean and tidy while remembering to vacuum your mattresses reasonably regularly.
Always check your luggage on return from holiday and be careful when buying second-hand furniture.
If you experience a pest infestation at your home or office contact Pest Busters for free advice and a fast, reliable service.
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