Rove Pest Control knows the ins and outs of bed bug control in Southborough. If you suspect an infestation, do not hesitate, contact us today for a free quote.

Bed Bug Biology

Bed bugs are small oval-shaped true bugs that feed on blood. While there are many relatives of the bed bug such as bat bugs, chimney swift bugs, etc. the common bed bug is the one of concern to humans. The common bedbug feeds on blood and blood alone.

The bed bug is visible to the naked eye and is about the size of a watermelon seed. They are relatively flat shaped, which allows them to squeeze into very narrow spaces. They are approximately 14-5/8 inches long.

bed bug in glass

Their beaklike, piercing-sucking mouthparts allow them to pull blood from their hosts. Males have a more pointed abdomen than the females which are more symmetrical and evenly rounded.

Females lay between 1 and 5 eggs daily totaling upwards of 500 in a lifetime. The process of traumatic conception leads to the spreading of bed bugs from one location to another. Bed bugs go through 5 nymphal stages progressing in color, size, and shape toward adulthood.

Where Bed Bugs Hide

Bed bugs are very versatile and will hide anywhere they can. They can get between wall joints, behind picture frames, inside electronics and even behind the trim. They may hide in the mattress or between the box springs and bed frame.

bed bug infestation on mattress

They are also master hitchhikers. They will hide in books, suitcases, backpacks, and even shoe tread. Most bed bugs will congregate in hiding places, but bugs pushed out from population pressures will look for a path of lesser resistance. In addition, impregnated females will likely hide away from the main population to protect their well-being.

Basic Myths of the Bed Bug

Anytime something is mysterious and scary, it is likely to develop some myths around it. This is also true of bed bugs. Here are some common bed bug myths:

  • Covering the bed in chemicals is the best way to treat for them – this is not only an ineffective treatment for bed bugs, but is a health risk to anyone sleeping in that bed.
  • They fly – Although they have non-functional wing pads, the only way they are flying is by hopping on a bird or an airplane
  • Only messy places get bed bugs – Bed bugs are not related to filth. They feed on blood and blood alone. While additional clutter can help them hide easier, they are not going away with a simple cleaning.
  • They only bite in the dark – Unfortunately, they will feed when they have the opportunity. Sleeping with the lights on will only deter them for so long. We have seen many instances of bed bugs feeding on people where they watch TV during the day.
  • Bed Bugs are microscopic – Even the eggs and the smallest nymphs are visible to the naked eye. The adults are roughly the size of a watermelon seed.
  • You can diagnose bed bugs by the bite – Everyone reacts differently and some people don’t react at all.
  • You have to discard infested items – most items can be treated. In rare circumstances, there will be items better off being discarded than treated, but it is not required.
  • Bed bugs carry disease – They have not been shown to transmit disease to humans like ticks or mosquitoes may.
  • Encasements prevent bed bugs – furniture encasements simply create a barrier, but bed bugs may hide outside of mattresses or couches such as in electronics or behind the trim.
  • Bed bugs only infest beds – bed bugs hide anywhere they can efficiently get from safety to a blood meal and back. This can be in the ceiling, in an alarm clock, a picture frame, etc.

Elimination

Many insects just need their populations reduced, but bed bugs are not acceptable even in small numbers. Bed bugs are quite resistant to most insecticides but become more susceptible when other modes of action are used against them. For example, heat treatments can kill bed bugs in all life stages from egg to adult. In addition, if a bed bug survives the heat treatment, they are more likely to have a weakened wax coating on their body which makes them more susceptible to insecticides. Other treatments available for bed bugs include freezing, physical removal, passive traps, active traps, and fumigants. It is best to have a bed bug specialist analyze the situation to determine the best strategy and combination of approaches to achieve the fastest and most effective results. Let our experienced technicians be your Southborough bed bug control team, we know bed bugs and the best strategies to get rid of them quickly.