Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bed Bugs in Hotels

Associated Content: In today's world of international travel, bed bugs in hotels are a common...

In today's world of international travel, bed bugs in hotels are a common occurrence. Every day a hotel is at risk of a guest bringing them into the hotel in their luggage.

Therefore, it's important for you, as a guest, to inspect your hotel room for bed bugs upon checking in. If the room has visible signs of the creepy crawlies, such as cast skins and black fecal droppings, this means that the infestation is severe and you should not be sleeping in that room. On the other hand, just because you don't see any visible signs, specifically on the mattress, doesn't preclude their presence. Common places for them to hide are in the seams of the mattress, in the cracks of the bed's headboard, in the baseboards, and in the folds of upholstered furniture.

An early infestation of them in a hotel can be very difficult to detect with the naked eye. And it only takes one of the little critters to hitch a ride in your luggage and go home with you where it will start multiplying. Therefore, it is very important that you keep your suitcases off the floor and if possible, use encasement bags to further prevent a hitchhiker entry.

Bed bugs feed at night (on you), then climb off the bed to find a dark place to lay their eggs and sleep. They have been known to travel 30 feet in a single night, which means no spot in your hotel room is 100 percent safe.

It is a very naive person who thinks that just because they have not experienced any bites or seen any signs of bed bugs in their hotel room that they are safe. These bugs are clever and resilient and are just waiting for an opportunity to go home with you. It is important that you be as proactive as possible at keeping them out of your belongings while travelling. Don't leave clothes on the carpet or upholstered chairs and use a metal suitcase rack if available.

Sourced By: Stephen Mermin
By: Bradley Skierkowski

NY mayor Michael Bloomberg talks to Letterman about job, money, bed bugs

NEW YORK (AP) — Mayor Michael Bloomberg revealed during his first sit-down interview on David Letterman's "Late Show" that he thinks being governor is a "terrible job" and said he's not embarrassed to be ranked the 10th richest person in the nation.

The billionaire mayor said he prefers being mayor because mayors can interact more with their constituents and "the state is so spread out."

Bloomberg, a Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-independent, last week endorsed Democrat Andrew Cuomo in New York's gubernatorial race.

During the 15-minute "Late Show" appearance, Letterman also teased Bloomberg about how his city has recently closed parts of Broadway in midtown Manhattan to create pedestrian plazas. Letterman called them "petting zoos."

Before Bloomberg went onstage at the start of the segment, a tree was partially blocking the camera and people were sipping coffee at small tables on the set, mocking the patio furniture that the Bloomberg administration installed in the Broadway pedestrian plazas in Times Square and Herald Square.

From behind the camera, Letterman was informed that "during the commercial break, Mayor Bloomberg installed a pedestrian plaza."

During Bloomberg's nearly nine years in office, he has appeared several times on Letterman's CBS show to read the Top 10 list or to participate in jokes, like when he gave Letterman's beard a key to the city.

On Wednesday, Letterman asked him about a wide range of topics, including World Trade Center rebuilding, the mosque planned in lower Manhattan near ground zero, the tea party movement and even rats and bedbugs, which have been discovered in theaters, clothing stores, office buildings, housing projects and posh apartments throughout the city.

"The bedbugs are probably tougher," Bloomberg said.

Letterman mentioned where Bloomberg, who founded the financial information company Bloomberg LP, was ranked on a list of richest Americans. Forbes magazine estimates his fortune at $18 billion.

"I saw a thing today where, and it's probably embarrassing, you're like the 10th wealthiest person in the world or something?" Letterman asked.

"That's not embarrassing," Bloomberg said. "Try it sometime. You'll like it."

By: Bradley Skierkowski
Sourced By: Morris County Daily Record: NEW YORK
Sourced By: SARA KUGLER FRAZIER,Associated Press Writer

Experts List Top 3 Places For Bed Bugs

Experts List Top 3 Places For Bed Bugs:

Bed bugs have become a nationwide problem.

Pest experts give three places where people should watch out for the pests.

Pinnacle Pest Control officials said hotels, garage sales and even movie theaters are the top three places to come in contact with bed bugs.

Experts said in order to get rid of the problem, intense heat must be used on the bed bugs to kill the insects and their eggs.

Link to Bed Bug Video

Sourced By: SACRAMENTO, Calif. —
By: Bradley Skierkowski

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Web Site Gives Travelers Early Warning For Bed Bugs

FORT WAYNE, IN (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- Travelers who want to stay clear of nasty bed bugs can feel better about their hotel choice, with the help of those who've gone before them.

We're talking about an Internet resource that can tip you off in advance to potential trouble.

Star Trek made famous the phrase, "We boldly go where no man has gone before".

But oftentimes travelers would trade adventure for knowledge of what to expect on the road.

That's especially true, now that bed bugs are becoming a real nuisance in resorts and hotels nationwide.

The web site, "" can give you more confidence about where you're staying.

We typed in “Super 8” for Seattle, Washington, hit the “Check Hotel” tab, and the first of a dozen listings revealed five reports of bed bugs.

A note from management challenged one of the hotel guest reports, saying the room was immediately taken out of service and no bed bugs were found.

On the same page, it lists 43 more reports of bed bugs at locations nearby.

There's also a place on the site for guests to file their own reports, in case they've had an unfortunate run-in with the biting bugs.

Officials with the Fort Wayne agency called “Travel Leaders” say the site is not foolproof, but may be helpful.

Linda Jenkins/Travel Leaders, Vacation Travel: " I guess we didn't actually know it was going to be such a big problem, but it's increasing and the awareness of it is increasing, thanks to the press, so I suppose if it gives travelers peace of mind to have a place to go to check, that's a good thing."

A note of caution is in order for people who use the site.

It is spelled out clearly that the site does not check the veracity of bed bug reports.

You can click on the link to view the site for yourself.

By: Bradley Skierkowski

Sourced By: By Jeff Neumeyer

Bed Bugs Bad for Dating

It almost goes without saying - bed bugs are bad, especially for dating. It kills the mood., a dating app on Facebook, conducted a study of more than 100 of its Facebook Page members on how the recent bed bug explosion is affecting their love lives.

56% of responders would leave their date if they noticed bed bug bites on his/her skin. 47% would ask if their date had bed bugs before going back to his/her place. 45% would cancel a date if someone admitted to a bed bug infestation. 35% have changed their usual dating spots because of a fear of bed bugs.

But one of the most interesting results is that "bed bugs" is the new "I have to wash my hair" excuse. 45% would use bed bugs as an excuse to get out of a bad date.

By: Bradley Skierkowski

Sourced By: By Mekahlo Medina

Get Rid of Bed Bugs: Bed bug oven in a trailer: the Insect Inferno

Get Rid of Bed Bugs: Bed bug oven in a trailer: the Insect Inferno

Bed bug oven in a trailer: the Insect Inferno

Last Tuesday, a number of news reports from the Bed Bug Summit mentioned this product, the Insect Inferno:

It’s basically a heat treatment facility in the form of a trailer, which allows you to load your mattresses, furniture and other household items inside, so they can be baked to kill bed bugs.
People typically get trucks (or pods) fumigated with Vikane, but few pest control firms seem to be offering heat treatment of furniture and belongings. This set-up is promising for people who want to move out of an infested dwelling without taking bed bugs with them, and for decontaminating furniture and belongings during treatment.
I wrote to Corey and Sue Westrum (via the contact page on their website) to ask about the cost of this device and to ask about how many are currently owned by pest control firms and others.

Sourced By:nobugsonm

Posted By: Bradley Skierkowski

Monday, September 27, 2010

Move Over Bed Bugs; Stink Bugs Are the New Bug in Town

Meet Stink. He's got glands that release a foul, musty odor when he's mishandled or feels threatened. He's just in from Asia and he's disguised as a small brown shield. But don't let that fool you. He's not the one who'll need to be intercepting attacks this Fall.
Rather, while the people of the Northeast have been distracted over the past several months -- with their eyes fixed on their beds -- Stink and his friends have been letting themselves in through the back door -- your vents.
And once the stink bugs are in your home, it's unfortunately very difficult to get them out.
Most Americans turn to manmade pesticides, when faced with a bug infestation of this kind; but no luck there this time. No, these super critters appear to be resistant to the stock of pesticides in this country. And, as such, the little shield-shaped bug has nullified one of man's defenses.
So, what about Mother Nature's defenses? There are natural checks and balances -- predators and prey, warm and cool weather -- in place for just this reason, right?
Wrong. The critters are native to China, Japan and Korea. And, while there is talk of an Asian wasp that controls their population growth over there, there is currently no natural predator for them in America.
Bad news bugs.
And to make matters worse, the stink bugs appear to have no problem whatsoever migrating to find more favorable weather conditions for themselves. In their native Asia, that meant a move to rocky outcroppings; a cold-weather home, which apart from the occasional climber or caver, seemed to bother no one. Here in America, though, they've settled for the closest equivalent: Urban office buildings, hotels and suburban homes.
And that's why homeowners across the mid-Atlantic region have been discovering mushrooming populations of these stink bugs in their homes of late. Parke Brewer lives in Silver Spring, Maryland and he is one of those unlucky homeowners.
"They're everywhere," Brewer says, surveying the rafters and screen windows of his covered porch. "If you look around this whole porch, which we like to enjoy if it's a nice day out, for dinner, for lunch, for relaxing; but when the stink bugs are around, they'll fly and hit you in the face or in the head. And it's not very pleasant to be out here. So, I've tried to attack them as best as I can, but I'm losing the battle."
Brewer is not alone. Since 2001, when the stink bugs were first spotted in Allentown, Pa., their population has burgeoned and they have spread to 29 states in mid-Atlantic America.

"It's kind of a perfect storm of conditions that are allowing these guys to explode," says Mike Raupp, an entomologist at the University of Maryland. "One, we used to use heavy pesticides. Now, these bugs are increasing in numbers. Two, we're becoming an importing nation. Bugs are coming in. Three, people are going to countries we've never gone to before; lots of second and third world countries, where bugs like bed bugs are common.
"So, there are lots of opportunities for bugs to come in. Also, this year the weather was perfect for bugs to explode."

So, this year's weather, which has proven such a foe to farmers across the country by withering crops with its extreme heat and droughts; appears to have enabled yet another farm foe in the stink bug. And that's exactly where stink bugs have been hiding all this time; in gardens, orchards and fields, sucking the sap out of the plants there.
But with the coming of Fall, they've transformed their menace from a business to a personal one.
"It's never ending," says Brewer, clutching a plastic bag full of the stink bugs, which he's captured and now suffocating. "You'll trap or you'll capture or smack them with a fly swatter, 20 to 30 times in one day. Then, there'll be that many more even within an hour. I take it personally and I try to catch as many as I can, but it hardly seems to put a dent in them."

As a result, Brewer's porch is largely out of commission, due to the unpleasant aroma which he insists the bugs emit, even if he does not squash them. So what is there to do?
Well, some people don't find the smell that bad.

"Stinky is as stinky does. Stinky is a relative thing," Raupp says. "I don't find them unpleasant, but a lot do. Some people say they smell like cilantro. Then, I say, put some salt on them."
In fact, in some countries like Laos, the bugs are eaten and even considered a delicacy because of their pungent smell. But, if that's not exactly your taste, there is this bright side to look at

The stink bugs are not harmful to you, your children or your possessions. They have not been known to carry diseases. They're merely going to seek shelter in your home and, occasionally, make the place smell really bad.
"You're never going to beat Mother Nature," Raupp says. "Bet on the bugs. The bugs have the answer. They've been at this thing for 6 million years. People don't have to freak out. It's not a plague, even though they're showing up in biblical number.

By: Bradley Skierkowski


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Bed bugs mean big business for Canadian distributor

No bigger than an apple seed, the tiny bed bug is wreaking havoc across the world, with Nike the latest retailer to fall prey to an infestation that forced it to shutter its flagship Manhattan store.
But for one Canadian company, bed-bug paranoia is proving big business. Markham, Ont.-based Caber Sure Fit, which distributes mattress protection products, has seen its sales jump by 35% over the past six months.
The company has the Canadian rights to Protect-a-Bed, a line of covers that effectively encase a mattress and box spring, preventing bugs getting in and stopping them from getting out and biting if they're already there.
The company expects its protection business to double this year and now it's setting its sights on international expansion.
"Bed bugs are big business," Caber Sure Fit president Bernard Weinstein said in an interview. The company "started out as a hobby and then became a monster."
The U.S. National Pest Management Association has warned the world may be on the verge of a bed-bug pandemic. In a recent survey of members to determine the extent of the problem, 95% of companies said they had encountered an infestation in the past year.
According to Insight Pharmaceuticals, Toronto is the third-worst afflicted city in North America, behind Columbus, Ohio, and New York, while Vancouver takes the eighth spot.
Weinstein said the bulk of his business is being driven by the hotel industry, where reports of a bed-bug infestation can have a devastating impact on both revenue and reputation.
While hotels are reluctant to advertise they are using the products, they are increasingly contacting the company to protect their beds, he said.
A hotel with a problem in one room may need to shut down nine surrounding rooms to ensure the bugs don't migrate. And at the luxury end of the market, where hotels may have invested $1,000 a bed, that soon begins to add up.
"It has a major economic impact," Weinstein said. "In the good old days they would throw these things out if they had an infestation, but now it's costing them money."
Caber Sure Fit emerged in its current form after Caber Distributors bought Sure Fit Home Furnishings in February. It's now planning further expansion through acquisitions, with a target hit annual turnover of $50 million in the next two years.
Weinstein said he's currently one-third of the way there.
"Things are going well and we want to go global," he said.
"We'll go to where the bed bugs come from ... Africa, South Africa. We'll take it slowly. We have a strong balance sheet and we're well funded. The business has grown through nursing and nurturing."

Nine years ago, Weinstein, a South African native, was working in the information technology business when an old friend from South Africa contacted him and asked if he'd be interested in distributing his mattress protection product in Canada.

"I said leave me alone, but the product arrived the next day."
He said he began putting out feelers and soon realized that bed bugs would become a major problem and one that isn't going away any time soon.

The Protect-a-Bed won't stop bed bugs from infesting your home, but they will prevent an expensive mattress from becoming contaminated and needing to be thrown out.

By: Bradley Skierkowski
Sourced By: By Sharon Singleton, QMI Agency

Inspectors wary of bringing bedbugs home

EDMONTON - If the thought of bedbugs infiltrating your home makes your skin crawl, look on the bright side: at least you're not a health inspector.
They're the people who have to look under mattresses, rifle through drawers and peek behind headboards when someone complains of an infestation.
Then they have to go home to their families.
"I don't think you'll find an inspector who works here who doesn't have a method of shedding their clothes before they go home," says Sandra Hamilton with Alberta Health Services.
"If I go and look at somebody's bed and find bedbugs in there, there's a pretty good likelihood that one has dropped into the hem of my pants. So when I walk inside my front door, I take off my pants and anything else I happen to be wearing and it all goes straight into the wash."
She never sits down while doing an inspection. In the winter, Hamilton stores her heavy coat in her unheated garage in order to freeze any stowaways.
"It's cold getting dressed in the morning," she says with a laugh, "but it's better than having bedbugs in my house."
As the city's bedbug infestation continues to grow, so too does the inspectors' workload. Hamilton says it's only going to get bigger.
Problem is, nobody can say how big the explosion will be.
That's why Edmonton has a bedbug committee, made up of provincial and city officials.
It's getting ready to survey landlords and condo boards to try to get a handle on how bad things really are.
We know that it's a huge issue across North America, especially along the Eastern Seaboard. We also know the creatures are creeping west.
"Based on the news we're hearing in the eastern U.S. and Canada, I'd say it is exploding and it's going to explode here too," Hamilton says.
The committee will also put together simple brochures telling people how to prevent an infestation, and what to do if they get one.
Hamilton says there's lots of information available on the Internet, but it's often complicated and contradictory.
"It can be really hard for the average person to sift through it and sort out what's fact and what's fiction," she said. The new material will be aimed at third-grade level readers and have lots of illustrations, so even people with minimal English can figure it out.
No one is immune from bedbugs. Everything from five-star hotels to flophouses have reported infestations.
In fact, Hamilton says, they've even been called to University hospital, where staff were worried when patients showed up with bugs in their clothes.
But, she added, hospitals are easy to fix because they're kept meticulously clean and don't have carpets.
Meanwhile, a 300-unit seniors home on the south side was treated for an infestation when a few suites got infested.
"When this happens, we eradicate them quickly," said Susan McCarthy, spokeswoman for the Greater Edmonton Foundation, which operates the Montgomery Legion Place at 9420 92 St.
The foundation uses sniffer dogs to track down bedbugs, and when they find them, they fumigate the infested apartments, along with any adjoining suites.
"If the bedbugs are fumigated, they can move to the next apartment," she said.
"It's something that we're always going to have to be aware of from now on in Edmonton. It's permeated the entire world."

By: Bradley Skierkowski

Sourced By: Andrew Hanon, QMI Agency

Bed bugs invade Hampton Roads

Bed bugs are invading businesses, local hotels, and homes in Hampton Roads at an alarming rate.
The Health Department reported the number of infestations this year as nearly 10 times what it was three years ago. Bed bugs usually live in beds, come out when people are asleep, and feed on blood.

Bed bugs ran a Virginia Beach family out of their bedroom. "When you don't sleep, you become psychotic after two days. You don't know if you're up or down. You're just crying and undealable," said Linda Phillips, who believes the bugs followed her home from a motel in Bedford, Virginia.

It cost Phillips $5,000 to treat her family's large two story home of the bugs.
An exterminator took into a bedroom to show where the beds hide. Adults are about the size of apple seeds and babies look like moving grains of sand. New ones hatch every day, and exterminator Corey Newell said it doesn't take long for the bugs to take over.
Bed bugs hide out in dark crevices like picture frames, night stands, and light sockets.
Health officials said if you see them - act fast and be prepared.

Environmental Health Manager Erin Sutton said they inspect hotels once a year. After that, they only check out complaints.
"We do the left side room and the right side room, and the up room, and the down room because they do travel well through walls and baseboards," said Sutton.
To reopen a room, the hotel must submit written notice from an exterminator that it's bug free, but that is not always a guarantee.

"If a company is offering a guarantee, that's something you should probably watch out for. They're probably not being honest with you," said Sutton.
Bed bugs are just hard to kill, so Sutton recommends inspecting mattress and headboards before you sleep in a hotel. Sutton also recommended to never put suitcases or purses on the bed.
"Heat is one of the best things for bed bugs, so set your suitcase out in the sun for a day," said Sutton, "The people with the little white vests come and take you away."
There are many ways to treat bed bugs, and the Health Department said a combination of chemicals and heat above 120 degrees seems to work best.
Professional examinations can cost up to $5,000, so experts said if you do it yourself, be prepared to throw out things like furniture and carpeting.

By: Bradley Skierkowski

Sourced by: WAVY TV

Bloomington campus prevents Bed Bugs

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University says swift action by its staff may have prevented an infestation of bed bugs on the Bloomington campus.

IU environmental health and safety director Mike Jenson says an employee at the IU Wells Library found one bed bug on a library wall Monday. After that discovery, public health staff inspected the area and set out traps that caught a second bed bug.

Jenson says the area has now been treated with an insecticide and the insect traps remain in place. As of Wednesday, no additional bed bugs have been found.
He says the staff's awareness and quick actions may have prevented an infestation of the irritating small reddish-brown wingless insects.
The "bites" of bed bugs can cause red, itchy welts that can become irritated if scratched.

By: Bradley Skierkowski
Sourced By: Associated Press