In the past week two local media references in Prince George and Kamloops, have mentioned the spreading bed bug problem has infiltrated their cities.
In Kamloops, the Canadian Mental Health Association is about to unveil plans for a $2.5 million remake of the former Rendezvous Hotel into a 48 bed co-ed shelter. The plans include steam-like showers, located at the segregated entrances for men and women – aimed at reducing the transfer of bed bugs into the shelter.
In Prince George, an Orkin pest control technician, Shawn Yost, exclaimed bed bug activity has doubled or tripled over the past year. Although his estimate is not exact, it does reflect what has happened elsewhere in the large metropolitan areas in Canada and the US.
Up to now, news pieces about bed bug outbreaks have been in large densely populated cities – like Toronto, Vancouver and Winnipeg. Experts had warned that the bed bug problem would continue to increase and spread. These small articles seem to be the first indications the predictions are materializing.
So, if bed bugs are heading your way, what can you do to prevent bed bugs? Education is the first step – “Spread the word, not the bed bug”. Learn the signs of bed bugs. Next, install passive monitors, like the BB ALERT®. And if you feel you have been exposed to bed bugs or wish to be pro-active and rule out bed bugs – hire a bed bug dog to give you peace of mind. A bed bug sniffing dog can also be called in post-treatment - to ensure the treatment was successful.
Posted on April 16, 2011 by Ken Hando
Bed Bug Mutts
After working in Prince George for more than a year, a pest control service technician has a warning about tiny critters that can turn your life into a nightmare.
"Bed bug activity is on the increase in this region," said Shawn Yost. "We're not trying to frighten people, but as tourism increases in Prince George, it's more likely that the problem will increase. With the Canada Games coming here in 2015, I think it's important for the Chamber of Commerce and motel and hotel managers to know what's going on."
He said service calls have increased significantly.
"We had about 35 calls, but since January of this year we've had close to 70."
Bed bugs are transient creatures and can travel comfortably in clothing, luggage, vehicles, buses and airplanes.
"A common problem is sometimes people try to get rid of them on their own, and they wait too long," said Yost.
"There are commercial materials to treat for bed bugs. It usually calls for 24 hours out of the house, and hotels and motels are closed down for 24 hours. That's the legal time frame by WorkSafe B.C."
Bed bugs see people as good feeding areas, being attracted to the carbon dioxide in a human's breath.
"They may bite more than once on a feeding area. Everyone reacts differently. Some may never notice while others will have welts or mosquito-like bites. Sometimes they itch, sometimes not," Yost said.
He said bed bugs will feed on pets if they have to, but "they have acquired a taste for humans."
Yost said it's important for residents to be on the watch for the little varmints.
Check your sheets and under the raised mattress seams which is a nice hiding place for them.
He said some home remedies that may help is to suck them up in vacuum, commercial steaming with very hot water or using a commercial laundromat or hot washer and dryer for bedding.
Bed bugs are about quarter inch or smaller in length and rust brown in colour. Males are oblong shaped while females are circular shaped.
Their offspring, called nymphs, are transparent and become coloured after their first feeding of blood.
written by Bernice Trick
Originally posted to PG Citizen April 9, 2011
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