Sunday, September 26, 2010

Getting Rid of Bed Bugs

For you home owners, here is a clue that you have a bed bug infestation. These are bed bug droppings along the gap between the baseboard and carpet.

Early detection is vital. But after that, battling the pests is not a one-person job or an easy fix, says Daniel Mackie of Green Leaf Pest Control. Pesticides alone won’t kill them. But various methods are available to fight them, though the jury’s still out on their effectiveness.

1. Fumigation: The cheapest method involves spraying a large amount of pesticides in infested areas. This can cause bedbugs to move to another area that has not been sprayed. Research also shows bedbugs may be acquiring resistance to certain pesticides.

2. Multi-step approach: Most licensed pest-control companies use a combination of techniques, including inspection (sometimes with sniffer dogs), vacuuming, steaming and a powdered product called diatomaceous earth, a fossilized algae, that is put into small spaces: under light switches, underneath baseboards, in the box spring — anywhere bedbugs might hide. Companies follow up in a few weeks to ensure the bugs haven’t returned.

3. Heat: Bedbugs are rapidly killed when exposed to temperatures over 45°C, but a slow increase in heat will cause the bugs to scatter and possibly lead to further infestation, such as to the room next door or the floor above. Mackie says his company will be bringing the heat technology to Toronto in coming weeks. But this should never be tried by homeowners themselves.

Information sourced from Toronto Star

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