Bed Bugs Detection. You should act quickly if you think you have bed bugs in your house. If they are left untreated, small infestations might quickly grow into huge infestations. Read more about how bed bug identification devices work and various treatment approaches for bed bugs.
Using a detection tool is one way to check for bed bugs in your home. Active and passive are the two basic forms of these.
Bed bug monitors attract bed bugs from their hiding places by using lures to mimic the presence of a host. These are frequently used to attract and capture bed bugs using carbon dioxide and heat, two signals that the insects use to locate hosts.
Bed bugs do not climb well on smooth, vertical surfaces, thus passive bed bug detectors, often known as bed bug interceptors, work on a simpler premise.
Bedposts are equipped with these little, plastic dishes. The insects can crawl inside but not get out because the outer surface is rough and the inner surface is smooth.
- What are bed bugs?
- Choosing the Best Bed Bug Detection Method
- Detecting Bed Bugs Using Bed Bug Monitors
- DIY vs. Professional Help
- When Bedbugs Bite
What are bed bugs?
Little insects that feed on human blood are known as bed bugs. They’re wingless and flat, with a reddishbrown body. The adult is about an inch long and resembles a wood tick in appearance.
The bed bug’s color changes from brown to purplish-red and its body grows in size and shape when it has taken a blood meal. When they initially emerge as tiny bed bugs (or nymphs), they are approximately 1/16 of an inch long.
After feeding, nymphs turn bright red. They are virtually colorless before.
SIGNS OF BED BUG INFESTATION
Because they are tiny in size, detecting bed bugs may be tough. They can hide in small cracks and crevices.
Bed bug evidence, on the other hand, might be discovered in bedding and mattresses. On infested surfaces, live bed bugs drop clusters of dried excrement that form dark brown or black spots. A slight, sweet, musty odor is also emitted by bed bugs.
Where to Check for Bed Bugs
Bed bugs prefer to get into tiny holes and corners near where people sleep, since their flattened bodies like to get close to where people spend most of their time. Mattresses, box springs, headboards, footboards, bed frames, and other furniture located within 5 to 8 feet of the bed are all examples.
Cracks and gaps behind wall outlets, floor molding, window and door molding, and where carpet edges meet the wall are other common sites.
If their population is large and they’ve dispersed from their more common areas, bed bugs can be found in a variety of different places.
Bed bugs may be carried into previously clean rooms.
Contact a pest control firm to discuss treatment alternatives if you have discovered a bed bug problem in your home.
Bed Bug Behavior and Habit
Before an infestation becomes established and after your home has been treated, understanding the behavior of bed bugs (how they eat, live, and reproduce) will help you to detect one.
Feed on humans, but will also eat other mammals and birds if the opportunity arises.
When feeding on a host, will readily travel 5-20 feet from secure hiding places (harborage).
If hungry, they will seek hosts in broad daylight, even though they are mostly active at night.
It may take three to twelve minutes for your baby to eat.
Adults and children excrete 20% of the time, resulting in rusty or tarry stains on bed sheets and in bug hiding spots.
While still eating, large nymphs will excrete remnants of past blood meals.
Before an individual bug can progress to the next of the six life phases, it must receive at least one blood meal.
They’re able to eat more than once.
Molting of the skin is required for each stage.
Both males and females must feed at least once every 14 days to continue to mate and produce eggs.
Each female may produce 1 to 3 eggs each day, with a lifetime production of 200 to 500 eggs (6 to 12 months).
Under ideal circumstances, the egg-to-egg life cycle takes four to five weeks.
At temperatures as low as 7°C (46°F), bed bugs may live and function, but their body temperatures must reach 45°C (113°F) for them to survive.
To ensure that heat reaches the bed bugs no matter where they are hiding, the room must be much hotter than usual.
Bed bugs, especially common bed bugs, can be found nearly anywhere.
Tropical and subtropical areas are home to tropical bed bugs (Cimex hemipterus), which need a higher average temperature than the common bed bug.
Choosing the Best Bed Bug Detection Method
Getting rid of bed bugs is notoriously difficult. Bed bug infestations are on the rise all over the world because of their size, ability to hide, and rapid reproduction rate.
Early detection is the key to preventing your home or property from becoming infected. Bed bug detection can be a very difficult endeavor if you aren’t familiar with the indicators of live activity.
Canine Scent Detection – 95-98% Accuracy
The best and quickest way to identify bed bugs is through this technology. Scent detection dogs are by far the best option for bed bug detection, with an accuracy rate of 97-98% and proper training and care.
Certified dogs and their handlers assist to save people time and money by detecting bed bugs on the first visit, as well as determining if any signs of live bed bug activity remain after treatment.
Ensure that the pest control company you hire is using a NESDCA certified dog since it will be a time and money saver in bed bug extermination.
Due to their extremely sensitive noses, breeds like Bloodhounds and Beagles are ideal for bed bug detection.
Before being certified to detect bed bugs, scent detection dogs must receive 1,000 hours of training. The dog and its handler must also complete NESDCA testing together, in addition to completing this hour requirement.
Passive Interception – 95% Accuracy
When attempting to detect bed bugs, passive interception is a third option. This approach is used to do it.
Bed bugs are intercepted as they travel to feed on a sleeping host by placing traps known as interceptors on the feet of bed frames and furniture.
The use of interceptors to detect the existence of live bed bugs may be a very cost-effective and accurate option.
Interceptors do not provide the benefit of discovering Bed Bugs’ exact position, which is the primary disadvantage.
Regular interceptor maintenance is also vital in order for them to operate properly and accurately. If the insects are already in the bed/furniture or gain access to the host through another route, such as drapes or wall hangings, interceptors can also fail.
Visual Detection – 50% Accuracy
Visual detection is another option for identifying something. In comparison to the 97-98% accuracy of canine scent detection, this has a 50% accuracy rate. Visual detection is less reliable and takes a lot of time, not to mention the fact that it’s difficult.
During the inspection, a technician must check every corner and nooks and crannies in the home for signs of bed bug activity. In comparison to the minutes required for canines, the whole procedure may take multiple hours.
To know if there are bed bugs present, the technician only needs to find one bug; however, they will have to inspect the whole house to determine how severe the problem is.
Although there are various pest control businesses that have experience with visible pest detections, a well-trained scent detector dog is always more reliable than visual detections.
Detecting Bed Bugs Using Bed Bug Monitors
Changlu Wang, Extension Specialist in Entomology.
When bed bugs become more prevalent in our culture, many individuals are concerned about bed bug infestations.
If they aren’t spotted early, identifying and controlling bed bugs might be time-consuming and costly. In addition, after the removal of bed bugs, it is difficult to tell if they are still there. Several tools for bed bug detection are described in this publication.
Bed bug monitors are available in a variety of models for different uses. The most cost-effective for identifying bed bugs is pitfall-style traps (Wang et al. 2009a, 2011).
Susan McKnight Inc in Memphis, Tennessee, demonstrated that the ClimbupTM Insect Interceptor is particularly successful because of its fabric tape-covered outer surface.
To catch bed bugs that are escaping from the furniture or attempting to reach the furniture for a blood meal, pitfall-style traps are set under the legs of beds and upholstered furniture. There are no attractants in the gadget.
As a result, it’s regarded as a passive monitor. Active seeking for a human host on which to feed and tendency for climbing vertical coarse surfaces are two bed bug behavior traits that passive pitfall traps take advantage of.
Any bridges between the furniture and the floors must be eliminated, and the furniture must be pulled away from walls.
To detect bed bugs at very low numbers, interceptors must be present for at least a week or longer. Interceptors are considerably more successful than visual inspections and knowledge gained from interviews with building occupants, according to research (Wang et al. 2016).
By preventing the bed bug from reaching the resident, passive pitfall monitors are more likely to lower the number of bed bug bites. They should be placed beneath legs of beds and upholstered furniture. Some beds, on the other hand, may be missing a frame or have huge legs.
Passive pitfall traps could be deployed against the sides and legs of mattresses and furniture, resulting in a modest reduction in bed bug detection rates.
Monitors baited with bed bug attractants are another option for monitoring bed bugs. Carbon dioxide (CO2), heat, and chemical lure released by the host are all drawing nymphs to them (Wang et al. 2009b).
When a CO2 source is added to a trap, the trap can be very effective for detecting bed bugs.
According to research, both the dry ice or sugar-yeast fermentation process may be used to generate reliable and efficient sources of CO2 for monitoring bed bugs (Wang et al. 2011, Singh et al. 2015).
Bed bug numbers in inhabited or unoccupied rooms may be detected during a single night of trapping.
Dry ice traps or sugar-yeast traps are equally or more effective than non-baited pitfall-style bed bug monitors, according to tests conducted in apartments. Dry ice or sugar-yeast traps can detect bed bugs more quickly than non-baited pitfall traps.
Dry ice has certain inherent safety hazards. It’s also difficult to come by dry ice. It is simple to construct a sugar-yeast trap, however it must be in a huge container.
Dry ice traps and sugar-yeast traps are effective tools for people who cannot afford professional bed bug inspection services if they are constructed and utilized properly.
DIY vs. Professional Help
Treating bed bugs is a little different from detecting them. It may be tempting to deal with a bed bug infestation on your own when dealing with them. It’s worth noting, though, that bed bugs are notoriously difficult to manage.
But it may cost you more in the long run, even while it seems like a do-it-yourself solution can save you money.
Several bed bug treatments will be necessary, and they may need many different treatment approaches used concurrently.
You may need to start the process over if you miss a treatment or do it incorrectly, risking making the infestation worse and/or spending more money that you do not have. A call to a bed bug control professional is more common than not when an attempt at DIY treatment fails.
When Bedbugs Bite
People are most commonly bitten by bedbugs while they are sleeping, especially at night. With an extended beak, they feed by pricking the skin and draining blood. After three to ten minutes of feeding, the bugs become swollen and go unnoticed.
Bedbug bites feel good at first, but later develop itchy welts. Bedbug bites are anyplace on the skin exposed while sleeping, unlike flea bites that are mainly about the ankles. Also, unlike flea bites, the bites do not have a red center.
Bedbugs may be mistaken for mosquito bites or other things by individuals who are unaware of their presence. You must locate and identify bedbugs yourself in order to confirm their bites.