Recent reports have claimed incidences have increased by over 500% in recent years and bed bugs certainly appear to be on the rise.
A number of factors have been linked to this epidemic including increased international travel and immigration and the decreased use of residual insecticides for cockroach control.
There are several ways in which dwellings can become infested with bedbugs.
People may acquire bedbugs at hotels or bed-and-breakfasts and bring them back to their homes in their luggage or they might pick them up by inadvertently bringing infested furniture or used clothing to their household. The size of a bedbug infestation is very variable, largely dependant on the time elapsed from the initial infestation.
Treatment can be challenging with every crack and crevice within 15 – 20 feet of the host being a possible harbourage.
Bedbugs are not known to be frequent carries of disease but are a pest due to the unpleasant irritation following their bites.
|Latin name:||Cimex lectularis|
|Length:||Approx. 6mm at adult stage.|
|Colour & description:||Are pale brown when unfed but brown when engourged with blood. Oval but flattened unless recently fed. Are wingless with a short head and long slender mouthparts.|
|Habits & habitat:||Nocturnal parasite with all stages feeding on mammalian blood. Hide by day in cracks and crevices in beds, furniture, behind skirting boards emerging when hungry to find food.|
|Life cycle:||up to 200 days|
|Reproduction rate:||Following insemination females produce 2-3 eggs per day for life (several hundred eggs in her lifetime).|