Bedbug Information for Successful Control
Adult bedbugs are about 1/8-inch long and reddish-brown, with flattened, oval shaped bodies that allow them to live in small cracks and crevices. Bedbugs do not fly, but can walk rapidly over floors, walls, ceilings and other surfaces. Females lay tiny white eggs that are hard to see without magnification. Newly hatched bedbugs are no bigger than a pinhead. As they grow, they molt (shed their skin) five times before reaching maturity. A blood meal is needed between each molt. Bedbugs can complete development from egg to adult in as little as one month. Adult bedbugs can survive up to a year without feeding. Although bedbugs prefer feeding on humans, they will feed on other warm blooded animals, including pets. Bedbugs can be transported in travelers luggage and clothing. Buying used mattresses, box springs, furniture and other second hand items is a common way bedbugs are brought into previously non-infested buildings.
Bedbugs are nocturnal, active mainly at night. During the daytime they prefer to hide close to where people sleep or sit still for periods of time. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees, but tend to congregate in hard to find cracks & crevices in bed frames, night stands and other furniture, behind baseboards, heaters, door and window frames, pictures on walls, loose wallpaper, under wall to wall carpets, in personal belongings, electronics, electric outlets, clutter and clothing laying on floors. They can easily spread to adjacent rooms or apartments.
A sign of bedbug activity is rust or reddish spots of blood on bed sheets or mattresses. Initial infestations tend to be around beds, but often, by the time the bedbugs are discovered they may have spared through the bedroom, occupying cracks and protected location. Bedbugs commonly infest couches and furniture in living rooms where people spend quiet time reading and watching TV.
- If Bed Bug Doctor Inspector recommends that any furniture be discarded such as mattresses, box spring or furniture, the resident MUST notify the building management and all furniture MUST be wrapped in plastic BEFORE placing it in the dumpster.
- Remove all bedding (sheets, pillowcases, comforters, etc.) from all mattresses and box springs and launder.
- Remove all clothing from dressers and closets and place in plastic bags.
- Throw away all unnecessary clutter in sealed garbage bags.
- Vacuum all floors in bedrooms and living room, paying close attention to areas where the wall meets the floor, using the vacuums crevice attachment. Immediately empty or remove vacuum cleaner bag, seal in a plastic bag and discard in a dumpster OUTSIDE OF THE BUILDING.