Bed Bug Information Part 4
Written by Paul J. Bello, author of The Bed Bug Combat Manual
This list of practical and useful things to know about bed bugs was written specifically with the many bed bug victims, hospitality professionals, property management professionals and pest management professionals in mind. Please note that these bits of information were gleaned from years of first hand field experience in dealing with bed bugs and working with industry colleagues across the country. They are presented to you the reader in an effort to assist you with your current bed bug concerns.
76. In August 2011 Bayer Crop Science Environmental Science Division updated their excellent bed bug training video on DVD featuring Dr. Austin M. Frishman, BES Technical Representative Joe Barile, BCE and others. Check with your local distributor or Bayer representative to get a copy of this video.
77. There are many folks working behind the scenes in the pest management industry on new bed bug products and techniques, always stay tuned for new tools, techniques and solutions that become available.
78. Bed bug eggs are coated with a sticky substance which glues them in place where they are laid. These eggs can hold on surprisingly well opposite a vacuum.
79. Based on field experience it is doubtful that a significant amount of eggs, if any at all, would be successfully removed via vacuuming when these eggs are laid in cracks and crevices where they can not be scraped along while also vacuuming.
80. It is beneficial to use a vacuum to remove as many crawling bed bugs as possible as part of your bed bug management program.
81. It's possible, and it has been happening, for service personnel to take bed bugs home with them from work.
82. It's possible for bed bug cross contamination to occur where bed bugs are brought to non-infested locations by service technicians who service bed bug infested accounts.
83. Companies dealing with bed bugs on a regular basis should have policies and procedures in place that address the prevention of cross contamination.
84. Cross contamination may be avoided if the proper precautions are implemented.
85. Having a complete change of clothes and sealing suspected work clothing within a plastic bag or other suitable container may be useful in preventing cross contamination.
86. Cross contamination may occur from a variety of sources including housekeeping, maintenance, deliveries and other service providers.
87. It's possible for bed bugs to crawl up a wall, across the ceiling and drop on unsuspecting victims as they sleep.
88. Can I bring bed bugs home from work with me? Yes, you can and people have done so. However, let's not panic about it. Bringing bed bugs home from work is dependent upon many factors including but not limited to: if there are actually bed bugs present at your work, what type of place you work at, the type of operation and practices utilized at your place of employment and what prevention methodologies, if any, are being utilized. If this is a concern refer to some of the prevention tips listed elsewhere in this list.
Bed Bug Information Of Interest to Hospitality & Housing Professionals:
89. We don't have or have never had a bed bug problem at our location. Isn't the bed bug problem just a lot of hype being promoted by the media and the pest management industry? Not at all, the incidence of bed bugs is certainly on the rise across the country and, even as an independent pest management consultant that does not advertise, I find that bed bugs take up as much as 85% of my time with an increased frequency of calls coming in.
90. It is wise to train your entire housekeeping and maintenance service staff about bed bugs such that signs of infestation can be discovered early on before a bed bug infestation can grow to a significant and broad scale problem at your hotel.
91. Hospitality locations should adopt an adequately scheduled inspection process to assist in early detection and prevention of significant bed bug infestations.
92. Bed bugs are an œequal opportunity infester. They do not discriminate between properties based upon location, type or quality as might the discerning vacation or business traveler. Due simply to their nature, logistics and other factors, every lodging location and multi-family property is subject to bed bug infestation.
93. That a guest picks up bed bugs from a hotel room may be largely dependent upon who may have stayed in that room or adjoining room prior to that guest. And, it is likely that your location getting bed bugs is largely due to a guest or resident bringing them in.
94. Bed bugs are "hitch-hikers and dependent upon man to travel from place to place, it's possible for you to transport bed bugs to other rooms, floors or locations during your regular servicing of your hotel by maid staff, maintenance staff, bell staff or other services.
95. Do not rely on a guest reporting bed bug problems as your sole first alert system of a bed bug problem. It is possible, and considered common by some, for people to get bitten without knowing it. As such, a bed bug problem may continue for many weeks or months before it is brought to your attention by a guest or discovered in another manner at your property. Additionally, consider that some guests may be hesitant to complain at all. A pro-active, well planned monitoring program to detect bed bug activity prior to a broad scale infestation develops is better than a non-existent program that relies on haphazard discovery of bed bugs.
96. Consider adopting the use of BDS ( Bed Bug Detection System ) monitor traps or other such bed bug traps to serve as a proactive bed bug monitoring so you may find bed bugs early on before a large scale and significant infestation occurs.
97. Hotel managers; keeping a bed bug suspected room œout of inventory or service for a number of days, weeks or months will not œstarve out the bed bugs and solve your bed bug problem. It is not necessary for bed bugs to feed every day or every week. They can "lay in wait" for the next host for surprisingly long periods of time. In fact, under certain conditions research data indicates that bed bugs can survive up to periods of about one year without feeding.
98. Apartment managers; a reliable bed bug program that delivers acceptable results can NOT be had for just $75 per door. Again, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
99. Bed bug work is labor intensive and costly work to do correctly and result in a bed bug free apartment. Anyone who is doing this work and taking it seriously will attest to that.
100. As a hotel manager, how can I tell guest about bed bugs without raising a red flag or making my property seem as if it is infested? This is certainly a tricky question and one that the hospitality industry must wrestle with. Recently, I attended a presentation where a resort manager gave a presentation on how they handle bed bugs at his location. It was encouraging to hear that they had implemented a well prepared bed bug management program at his location and that they were rather candid in their communications with concerned guests opposite the bed bug problem. While we realize that this is a very œtouchy subject with a perceivably significant down side risk for the hospitality industry however, at the end of the day the truth is the truth.