All About Bed Bugs
Bed bug infestations are quite scary but by learning how the parasitic bug lives and thrives, you can finally put up measures thus safe guarding your home. As one of the most common pests to infest a home, it is believed that bed bugs originated in the Middle East. They are known to be attracted to humans via thermal radiation emitted during exhalation of carbon dioxide just like mosquitoes. If left unchecked, a bed bug infestation can multiply rapidly making a home inhabitable.
How to identify bed bugs
In the world today, there are over 90 species of bed bugs but only three are known to suck human blood. They include the Cimex Lectularis, Cimex Hemipterus and LeptoCimex Boueti. The Cimex Lectularis is common in North America and grows to a length of 4 to 6 mm. It is characterized by short hair and a flat round body shape. Their eggs are usually creamy to white in color.
When the eggs hatch, the bed bug larvae starts off in a transparent glossy yellow color before changing to orange or rustic red as they molt. The adult bed bug is characterized by a rusty red color under normal circumstances and bright red color when full of blood. They have six legs; have two antennas and no wings.
What they eat
The common bed bug has plagued humanity for many years. In the past, they were controlled by burning sulphur but today as a result of the negative effects of sulphur, this method is rarely used. In history, bed bug infestation was a major problem that plagued Europe leading to the appointment of expert bed bug control experts.
As a result, a decline in infestation ensued resulting in the world enjoying a bed bug free environment from 1960s to 1990s. To survive, bed bugs are known to consume human blood. As said earlier, they use thermal radiation which humans produced during the exhalation of carbon dioxide especially when one is sleeping.
They pierce the skin with their beak-like mouth parts. A fluid like saliva is injected preventing the blood from clotting allowing them to continue feeding. Depending with the age of the bed bug, it may feed for three to fifteen minutes.
In the morning, if you notice itchy welts on your skin, then you probably were bitten by a bed bug. The bites are usually in a cluster of three.
Where do they thrive?
Bed bugs prefer dark areas and that is why they will shelter along the seams of a mattress and in the crevices of a bed frame. As the infestation grows, bed bugs will spread and hide in locations where fabric, paper and wood surfaces are. They also extend their infestation along base boards, beneath wall-to-wall carpeting, behind electrical outlets, in the curtain folds and under loose wall paper. Over the years, exterminators have reported finding bed bug infestation in artwork and pictures on the wall, phone receiver and even wooden prosthetic legs.
They are known to infest a home during spring and early summer.