Did You Know Bed Bugs Are Most Active In Fall?

Did You Know Bed Bugs Are Most Active In Fall?

By now, you’ve probably heard that bed bugs are a growing problem in the United States. Over the last two decades, they’ve returned to America in force. But, being a relatively new pest threat, there are still many things people don’t know about these bugs, such as the fact that they live almost exclusively with humans. Without this knowledge, your home is at greater risk of a bed bug infestation, especially this time of year. Let’s take a look at why bed bug infestations are common in fall and talk about what you can do to prevent an infestation.

While bed bugs are a year-round pest problem, infestations can ramp up in the fall. There are two big reasons for this. The first is that kids have spent the summer on vacation, which often involves taking trips, and taking trips usually goes hand-in-hand with staying overnight somewhere. This can allow bed bugs to get picked up and brought home. So by the time fall rolls around, a bed bug infestation can start to become noticeable. This is when we start getting calls.

The second reason infestations ramp up in fall has to do with what kids do in the fall. Going back to school means kids are in close contact with each other. They leave their clothing and bags near each other. Daycare kids lie down for nap time near each other. Kids have sleepovers. These are some of the many ways bed bugs can hitchhike from one home to another during the fall.

Whether you already have an infestation or you’re working to prevent one, it is important to recognize the warning signs of a bed bug infestation. Catching bed bugs early is super important. It can help you keep them from getting into your home and help you take care of them before they can torment you and your family.

Your greatest tools in the war on bed bugs is awareness of your surroundings and the power of a hot drier. Make sure you and your kids are always on the lookout for bed bugs and signs of bed bugs. Don’t let these bugs sneak up on you. If you see bed bug eggs or bed bugs in a bag, suitcase, pocketbook, clothing or some other object that can be put in the drier, put it in for 30 minutes on the hottest setting. This will kill bed bugs in all stages of development.

If you ever get a bed bug infestation in your home, seek professional assistance immediately. Trying to get rid of bed bugs is a nightmare.

For assistance with bed bugs in the Greater Knoxville area, trust the experts here at Russell’s Pest Control to resolve your problem. We have the credentials and experience to get the job done right… the first time.

Don’t Let Bed Bugs Ruin Your Summer

Don't Let Bed Bugs Ruin Your Summer

Do you know the warning signs of a bed bug infestation? If you do, you may be able to prevent a bed bug infestation and prevent these blood-eating pest from ruining your summer. Detection is key to prevention because bed bugs don’t come into your home from your yard; they hitchhike into your home. Here are some things you should know about bed bugs and how to detect them.

Keep these 5 Bed Bug Facts In Mind

  1. Bed bugs can be picked up in many places, not just hotels and motels. You can even get them from the home of a friend or relative.
    Bed bugs don’t live in dirty homes. They can be in any home. They’re not drawn to filth; they’re drawn to blood.
  2. Bed bugs don’t just spread at night. You can get them in the daytime. These insects have an aversion to the light but they will come out when they are in a dark environment.
  3. Bed bugs don’t just get carried into your home on your belongings, they can be in furniture and electronics.
  4. Bed bugs don’t just live in beds. They can live in furniture, under rugs, behind baseboards, inside outlets, in the cracks of crown molding, in wall voids, and more.

When looking for warning signs, pay close attention no matter where you are, no matter what time of day, and look in more than just beds for these signs.

  • Bed bugs leave shed insects skins as they develop through their 5 instars. These will be littered about in areas of infestation and you can find them sticking to fabrics.
  • Bed bug eggs are 1mm in length and pale in coloration. You may find individual eggs or you may see a bunch of eggs clinging together. Keep in mind that you can fit dozens of eggs on your thumbnail.
  • Bed bugs leave brown stains on fabrics. This isn’t urine. It is dried blood. So these stains can range from red to light tan in color.
  • Bed bugs excrete black feces. You may see small dots of black or you may see a patch of black staining due to many bed bugs in one location. If you see a black stain but no bed bugs, they may be on the inside of the item you are inspecting.
  • If bed bugs are infesting a location, you may see them. They range in size from 1 to 4.5 millimeters in length. They may be pale in color, tan, or rusty brown. In certain light, they may appear black. They are insects, so they have 6 legs and two antennae.

If you find bed bugs in your home and you live in our Greater Knoxville service area, we can help you eliminate those bugs. We offer comprehensive bed bugs services for all types of infestation. Reach out to us for immediate assistance.

Why A Heat Treatment Could Be The Perfect Solution To Your Bed Bug Problem

Why A Heat Treatment Could Be The Perfect Solution To Your Bed Bug Problem

If you’ve ever had a bed bug infestation or you have one on your hands right now, you know exactly how frustrating they can be! Bed bugs aren’t just a nuisance, they bite and leave clusters of itchy welts. They’re parasitic pests that require blood to live. This means they need us to survive. If you have bed bugs, you’ll notice small stains of blood on your sheets from their feeding sessions during the night. They’ll also leave fecal stains on sheets and furniture as well. These little bugs are about 3/8th of an inch long and oval-shaped. If any of these signs sound familiar, you could be dealing with a bed bug infestation! The best way to handle this is with professional pest control. DIY treatments require time, patience, money, and can’t effectively eliminate all the bed bugs of an infestation. This is why people turn to professional bed bug treatments to get the job done.

Heat treatments for bed bugs have many benefits compared to other treatments. Bed bugs are an extremely resilient pest. If you’ve experienced an infestation, you’ve likely learned just how resilient they really are. Heat remediation is one of the few methods that can actually wipe out all the bed bugs in your home at once. It works! And it’s fast. In a single day, your bed bug infestation can disappear. That’s music to the ears of many homeowners. The other good news is that you won’t have to throw out any infested furniture. It can be tempting to just throw out a mattress that bed bugs have invaded, but there’s no need. Heat treatments can penetrate a house and through the furniture, reaching past where chemicals can get to. It’s a win-win. Nothing in your house gets harmed and the bed bugs are eliminated.

So how does it work? Heat remediation is a process of raising the temperature inside a house to 120 degrees. This is done through the use of controlled heaters, temperature sensors, and industrial-strength fans. The professionals at Russell’s Pest Control are trained to perform the job safely and efficiently. Russell’s Pest adheres to the best management practices set forth for bed bugs by the National Pest Management Association. Rather than attempting to eradicate bed bugs on your own, let professionals do the job right the first time.

If you’re dealing with bed bugs, a heat treatment could be the perfect solution for you. The worst part about bed bugs is that they’re a year-round pest. If you find yourself with a bed bug infestation at any point in the year, you can turn to Russell’s Pest Control to take care of it! Schedule your free in-home pest evaluation today!

Bed Bugs: A Christmas Gift That Nobody Wants

Bed Bugs: A Christmas Gift That Nobody Wants

Christmas is a time of year when many of you look forward to seeing family members that you may not get to visit with often. You daydream about the holiday feast, giving and receiving the best gifts, and making new memories with those you love most. Traveling back to the place where you grew up is sometimes a part of the holiday season, and you wax nostalgic about times past. 
It’s a safe bet to say that no one dreams of ending the holidays with a bed bug infestation, but that is exactly what some of you will end up with before all the traveling is over. Now you may be wondering, how bed bugs get into homes during the holidays anyway? 

How Bed Bugs Get into Your Home

Bed bugs are notorious little hitchhikers. Their favorite way to travel is in or on your luggage, tote bags, purses, coats, and backpacks. As you travel over the holidays you often stay in hotels, fly across the country, wait in public places – and all of these are places where bed bugs can be found. People unknowingly bring bed bugs with them from their homes, hotels, or other public places, and then share the wealth so-to-speak with the rest of humanity.

It’s simple for bed bugs to crawl right into your bag when you set it down at the airline ticket counter, or to climb into a pocket when you leave your coat lying on a hotel floor. Once in your belongings, they simply travel along with you wherever you go. They may decide to offload at any point along the way, beginning a new life in someone else’s home, or possibly even in yours. 

Identifying Bed Bugs 

It’s important to be able to identify bed bugs in the event that you ever encounter them. Whether you’re in a hotel, a family member or friend’s home, or even in your own home, knowing the signs of bed bugs will allow you to stop a full-blown infestation in its tracks. At a minimum, this knowledge will help you to avoid taking these annoying pests home with you.

Here are a few things to look for:

  • Pink or red bite marks on your skin that may itch.
  • Pets scratching themselves more than usual.
  • Seeing an actual bed bug in your home –  in your bedding, on furniture, on your pets, buried in carpets and rugs, etc.).
  • The shed skins of bed bug nymphs.
  • Blood stains on your sheets, pillowcases, or blankets
  • Bed bug eggs anywhere on your bed, in nooks and crannies of furniture, or in the carpet.
  • Bed bug excrement – dark spots or streaks – on your sheets or blankets.

How to Prevent Bed Bugs

Though you cannot be certain to always keep bed bugs out with your prevention methods, there are a few things you can do to try and help prevent their access to you and your home:

Whenever you stay overnight anywhere besides your own home, be sure to check the room where you will be sleeping for signs of bed bugs. It’s a good idea to inspect the furniture, carpeting, and the bed. If you see any evidence that bed bugs are present, ask to be placed in a different room (and conduct a re-check there) or move on to a new place to stay.

You should do periodic checks of your own bed at home to ensure you stay safe from these irritating pests.

When you travel, never set your baggage, purse, or jacket on the bed or the floor in your room. Instead, place all of your travel items on top of a dresser or chair to prevent bed bugs from hitching a ride.

As you return to your home, wash all clothing on a high heat setting before putting them away. You may also wish to wash your bags in the same way. If you are unable to ash them, be sure to wipe them down and inspect them carefully for signs of bed bugs before storing them anywhere in your home.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs

If you think you have a bed bug problem, your best bet is to contact a professional. If bed bugs are left untreated, their numbers will grow to a large population in a short amount of time. The professionals at Russell’s Pest Control can get rid of your bed bug infestation quickly. You may be unsure of the kind of pest you’re dealing with. There is no need to worry – we can inspect your home to determine which pests have infiltrated your home.

At Russell’s Pest Control we offer services for both homes and businesses. We easily eliminate any size infestation. Contact us to learn more about bed bug removal and to get started right away! 

Why Bed Bug Infestations Are So Common In The Fall

Why Bed Bug Infestations Are So Common In The Fall

In fall, bed bug infestations are a problem for families in our Tennessee service area. This is the time of year when kids head back to school because summer vacation has come to an end. If your kids did any summer traveling, you may start to see signs of bugs in your home. It takes a few weeks for a bed bug infestation to become unmistakable. Here are a few things you should know.

How To Tell If You Got Bed Bugs This Summer

These are hitchhiking insects. If you or your kids brought them into the house this summer, some of those bed bugs may still be in the item they traveled in on. Look in the seams of luggage, the stitching of sleeping bags, the corners and cracks of boxes, and any other tight, hidden location within carriables. If you see tiny white eggs, shed insect casings, or tiny black droppings, it may be time to call a pest control professional.

Look For Bed Bugs

It stands to reason, if you see bed bugs in your home, you probably have bed bugs. But many people don’t know what bed bugs look like. These insects go through 5 development stages. When they first hatch, they are pale white, but as they develop, they become tan, and then brownish-red. Bed bugs have six legs, two antennae, and skin you can see through.

Bed Bugs And School

If you don’t have bed bugs in your home, other families may, and those bed bugs can transfer from their kids to yours when they go to school. It is important to be educated about bed bugs and schools. One of the most important tips we can give is to encourage you to do routine checks of backpacks, jackets, and clothing for the signs of bed bugs. If you find tiny white eggs sticking to your kid’s clothing, throw the item in the wash and set the temperature to the hottest setting. That hot water will kill those bed bugs.

Once bed bugs infest a home, it is vital to reach out to a pest control professional. These are pernicious pests that will hide in more places than just your bed. If you live in our Tennessee service area, let Russell’s Pest Control help. We offer a free in-home pest evaluation to get you started. Give us a call today to learn more about our bed bug control options.

Why Professional Bed Bug Treatment Is Worth It

Let’s face it, the thought of a bed bug infestation can be very intimidating. Bed bugs are not just annoying little nuisance pests, but can actually cause serious stress and anxiety for homeowners; not only that, they can bite without notice, spread throughout your home quickly, and they are one of the most difficult pests to get rid of.

While you sleep, bed bugs will usually leave a line of itchy red bites on your skin. Though some people only experience mild symptoms after being bitten by a bed bug, other people experience serious allergic reactions that can require medical attention. If these bites become irritated and the skin is broken, it could allow bacteria and germs to get inside, these bites can turn into a secondary infection.

Can bed bugs themselves can carry serious diseases? Actually, it has been recently discovered, that much like their cousins the “kissing” bug, bed bugs can transmit the same Trypanosoma cruzi parasite through their feces! Although it is rare in North America, if a bed bug is a carrier of the Trypanosoma cruzi parasite and deposits its feces on or near their host and those feces come in contact with mucous membranes or are accidentally ingested, it can cause Chagas disease. The symptoms of Chagas disease can last for a long period of time and include swelling, fever, fatigue, rash, aches, and loss of appetite. This disease is an infectious inflammatory disease that, if left untreated, can cause digestive and heart problems that can potentially be fatal.

Bed bugs are incredibly hardy pests that can withstand both cold and hot temperatures, as well as go without a blood meal for months, not to mention that they are also resistant to many chemical treatments. If you rely on DIY methods alone, you will have a very difficult time eliminating an entire infestation of bed bugs. If you suspect that you have a bed bug problem, it is important to enlist the help of a pest control expert to inspect your home for bed bugs and develop a plan for removal if they are found.

Professional eco-friendly heat remediation is the answer to all bed bug problems, both big and small! Unlike DIY methods, our heat treatment can eliminate all the bed bugs that are hiding inside your home effectively and efficiently. Russell’s Pest Control in Eastern Tennessee is equipped and ready to perform a detailed inspection of your home and guide you through the heat treatment process as well as safeguard your home and personal items. We are QualityPro-Certified by the National Pest Management Association, meaning you can rest assured that will

You can rest assured as we are QualityPro-Certified by the National Pest Management Association and guarantee our results.

Contact us today at Russell’s Pest Control in Eastern Tennessee for more information about our state-of-the-art bed bug heat remediation today.

Where Bed Bugs Are Found

Where Bed Bugs Are Found

Bed bugs are more common than you think. Plus, they transfer from one place to another rather easily on pretty much any type of item. Mostly, they will stay on fabric and cloth items, like your clothing or luggage. They could even hop on and take a ride on your shoes from a hotel or your place of work right to your very own home.

Typically, you will find bed bugs lurking in your sheets, blankets, and pillows. You might find them on your carpeting around beds as well. Don’t forget your sofa, chairs, and throw pillows might make a great hiding place for bed bugs too. They can also be found in electrical outlets, computers, laptops, game systems, and other hard to access areas. They can be in waiting room furniture, on department store shelves, or in books at the library. No home or commercial space is exempt from these relentless pests.

You can even pick them up from buses, trains, planes, schools, hotels, and anywhere else that people frequent. If you notice these bugs in public areas, make sure to notify someone in charge immediately. If you ever notice bed bugs in your hotel room, leave the room immediately with all of your things and request another room. If you think you’ve carried some home or want to take precautions, you could brush off your coat and vacuum out your luggage or briefcase. Make sure to brush the bottom of your shoes and leave them outside if possible. Change your clothes and put them in the washing machine on the hottest setting possible for the fabric right away. It may not eliminate them completely, but it may cut down on how many you bring into your home.

By now you’ve got the picture that bed bugs can be found almost everywhere and can be easily transported to your home. And, even though they are lurking about, they are so small you might not even see them. The only warning signs of them may be their tiny shed skins or their exoskeletons lying about.

They feed on human and animal blood; so be aware that if you have an infestation, they will be feeding on you. Their bite may get red and make you itch, which is a sure telltale sign. Your bed sheets or pajamas may have tiny rust colored stains from when they bite. Then there are also the stains left by their feces on your bedding and mattresses. Oh, and you’ll probably lose some sleep over them, from the itching and worrying that comes when they take over your home. Not to mention it could be embarrassing if you have guests over and they discover your infestation of bed bugs.

But, don’t worry! Russell’s Pest Control can help. Give the bed bug professionals here at Russell’s a call and get peace of mind as they take control of your bed bug problems quickly, discreetly, and effectively.

Avoid Unwanted Holiday Visitors

Avoid Unwanted Holiday Visitors

Christmas is a very hectic time of year. Typically, you are either hosting a gathering or going to a gathering or two over the next couple of weeks. It is important to understand that you and your visitors have the potential to unknowingly pick up unwanted pests during travel. The last thing you want to do is to become a distributor of unwanted pests!

Bed bugs top the list, but other bugs that can tuck into luggage and use it as their own personal moving van include several species of lice, fleas (in warmer climates or in homes that have pets), cockroaches, spiders, several species of beetles, and more.  Whether you are visiting or being visited, you need to be on the lookout for pests that are trying to sneak into your life.

Vigilance is the key. As you travel or after you have entertained guests, be sure to be aware that pests may have snuck into your space. There are signs, however, that you can become aware of and train yourself to spot. Let’s take a look.

Vigilance during travel:

Understand that pests can be found anywhere – planes, taxis, hotels, grocery stores, malls, hospitals, libraries, and even Grandma’s house – anywhere people frequent is a target for pests. Make sure that as you travel you check soft surfaces like seats, chairs, and beds for signs of pests. Also, be sure to inspect clothing as you shop for signs of pests, paying particular attention to scarves and hats. Inspect food packaging before you purchase any dry goods for signs that pests have tampered with it. Also, glance around checking for droppings from mice or roaches in hotels, restaurants, and other areas known to be plagued by these pests. What, exactly, should you look for? Well, things like:

  • Shed casings

  • Droppings

  • Actual bugs

  • Blood stains

  • Tiny brown spots

  • Black streaks coming from outlets

  • Small tears or punctures in product packaging

  • Unusual odors

  • Discarded wings

Vigilance after visitors leave:

The best way to avoid becoming a home for wayward pests is to clean, clean, clean. Once your company has gone home be sure to wash all bedding on the warmest setting possible and dry thoroughly in your dryer on the hottest settings safe for that fabric. Vacuum and wash floors with hot, soapy water; and be sure to pull out the sofa, stove, and refrigerator and clean there too. Bathrooms should be scoured and bath mats washed in hot water as well. Keeping your eye out for the signs that pests leave behind is a sure way to ensure that you do not spread pests to others, and they have not accidentally introduced them to you.
If after all the tinsel has been pulled from the tree, all the pie has been eaten, and the holidays are nothing more than a memory, you find yourself face-to-face with nuisance, harmful, or dangerous pests, give us a call. The highly trained experts here at Russell’s Pest Control know exactly how to safely and effectively eliminate any pest from your home. With more than 45 years of experience in local pest pressures, Russell’s Pest Control is the name people trust for pest control solutions that work.
Have a safe, happy, and pest-free* Christmas.