Bed Bugs are an increasingly common concern in both public and private spaces. They are described as such:
Appearance: Bed bugs have six legs. Adult bed bugs have flat bodies about 1/4 of an inch in length. Their color can vary from red and brown to copper colored. Young bed bugs are very small. Their bodies are about 1/16 of an inch in length. They have almost no color. When a bed bug feeds, its body swells, may lengthen, and becomes bright red, sometimes making it appear to be a different insect. Bed bugs do not fly. They can either crawl or be carried from place to place on objects, people, or animals. Bed bugs can be hard to find and identify because they are tiny and try to stay hidden.
Life Cycle and Reproduction: An average bed bug lives for about 10 months. Female bed bugs lay one to five eggs per day. Bed bugs grow to full adulthood in about 21 days.
Bed bugs can survive for months without feeding.
Bed bug Bites: Because bed bugs usually feed at night, most people are bitten in their sleep and do not realize they were bitten. A person’s reaction to insect bites is an immune response and so varies from person to person. Sometimes the red welts caused by the bites will not be noticed until many days after a person was bitten, if at all.
Common signs and symptoms of a possible bed bug infestation:
• Small red to reddish brown fecal spots on mattresses, box springs, bed frames, mattresses, linens, upholstery, or walls.
• Molted bed bug skins, white, sticky eggs, or empty eggshells.
• Very heavily infested areas may have a characteristically sweet odor.
• Red, itchy bite marks, especially on the legs, arms, and other body parts exposed while sleeping. However, some people do not show bed bug lesions on their bodies even though bed bugs may have fed on them.
Early detection is key in preventing the unnecessary spreading of pests on your property- if you have suspicions that a tenant may have Bed Bugs it is important to proceed with immediate inspection and treatment. Further, as of the beginning of this year, you must be in compliance with the disclosure laws with regards to properly informing all residents of any inspection results. Treating Bed Bugs is no small feat. Appointments require extensive preparation not to mention the need to dispose- yes, dispose!- of all furniture exposed to the infestation. Don’t risk the health of your tenants and your property! If you are in need of assistance in the management of a property you feel may have this potentially dangerous issue please contact us for immediate assistance.