Bed bugs thrive in places where large numbers of warm blooded animals sleep. . For this reason the parasites, which live on a diet of blood from animals and birds exclusively, are more common in hotels, motels and apartment buildings than they are in private homes and more likely to be found in urban areas that in the countryside.
It was only recently that bed bugs became uncommon among a large segment of humanity. Even today there are large areas of the world where bed bugs have never stopped being common. It was only with the development of insecticides in the 1930s that the bug was driven from our beds. The use of DDT and similar products made the bed bug essentially extinct in the USA by the 1940s. But the pest lived on in the wild and elsewhere.
The dramatic increase in the number of reported cases of bed bug infestation in North America began in the late Nineties. The unwelcome return of this pest after a half century absence is not currently under control, with a reported 5 times increase in populations in recent years.
It is believed that there are a number of factors behind this new epidemic of bed bugs. The increase in international travel has been cited as one possible cause. Another widely cited contributory factor is new methods of pest-control. In the 1990s fumigators began to use bait to control cockroaches rather than pesticide sprays. The bait introduced poisons into the colonies. This process was found to be more effective and less intrusive than spraying and the use of insecticidal and other sprays was reduced to almost nil.
The discovery that outbreaks were popping up in geographically disparate locations led to the discovery of problems in the poultry industry. Epicenters in Delaware, Texas and Arkansas were found to center around poultry farming operations. Infected poultry were transferring insects and eggs onto the workers.
The infestation problem in New York City id particularly acute. In the 2004-2005 period the city saw the total number of reported cases of bedbugs in the last half of 2005 surpass by 20 per cent the total number of cases reported in all of 2004. Toronto, Canada, was added to the list 2004. Both outbreaks are thought to tied to the presence of large populations of international travelers.
A central difficulty in getting these numerous outbreaks under control is the resistance the insect has developed to the chemicals used in the cockroach sprays that were so prevalent in the 1950-1990 era. Deltamthrin resistance was found to have increased 260 times over the kill point found in the original studies of the chemical.
The spread of bed bugs is assisted by the growth in long distance travel and the concentration of humans in urban centers. International travelers pick up bed bugs when traveling in countries where the pest has always been present. National travelers and tenants pick them up in hotels, motels, schools, the workplace: anywhere we gather in crowds of individuals from diverse regions.
The EPA in the United States has called a summit to address the growing problem of bed bugs.
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- Bed bug bites heal fast and therefore home remedies for bed bug bites would not really be of much importance.
- Instead, bed bugs may infest a variety of areas including the headboard and other attached furniture such as “bedroom walls.
- Also, some people can be significantly affected by the social stigma of having a bed bug infestation in their home.
- Bed bug eggs can be up to 1-1/2 mm long and are usually translucent white.
- New mattresses are expensive, but a bed bug infestation is even more costly.
- When using copious amounts of bed bug spray, more will end up in the air you breathe than inside all those tight areas.
- Typical reactions to bed bug bites usually include some level of local reddening, minor swelling, inflammation anditching (which can be very intense, and can sometimes recur without another bed bug bite) at each bite site.
- Bed bug eggs are a shiny, translucent and a milky white color as are the newly hatched bed bug nymphs.
- Three bumps in a row or grouped together indicate a single bed beg has inflicted several bites.
- Children are more sensitive so they tend to have more exaggerated bed bug rashes.
- Reaching upwards of 250º F, steamers will kill any bed bug or bed bug eggs instantly on contact, while also thoroughly cleaning the treated area.
- Testing new innovative treatment options, Stern has had excellent success with a new poison free treatment called Cryonite to kill bed bugs and bed bug eggs.
- Maturation to an adult bed bug can be as short as 5 weeks, assuming that temperatures are moderate.