Travel is an essential part of the holidays, and well, your luggage is the most common and preferred method of transportation for bed bugs. Anywhere there may be people, there may be bed bugs. So what can you do about keeping bed bugs out of your luggage while you're on your holiday travels? Let's learn about some basic steps you can take to identify bed bugs as well as cut down your chances of carrying them home with you.
Steps you Should Take Before Unpacking
1. Keep the luggage off the bed. When you first enter your hotel room or guest room, do not head to the bed firs with your luggage. If there are bed bugs present, that is a really quick way of increasing your chances of bringing them home with you. Your best bet is to head to the bathroom first. Place your luggage in the bath tub while you prepare to check the room. No bathroom? See if there is a metal luggage rack you can rest your bags on before unpacking. Staying at a relative's home, and you have neither a bathroom or a luggage rack? Wrap your luggage in plastic. It's easy to find plastic luggage covers online.
3. Begin a bed inspection. Go to the bed and pull back all of the covers all the way down to the mattress. It is really helpful to always pack a small flashlight in your luggage to use for your inspections. Take the flashlight and inspect the mattress--especially, around the seams. If you're using a flashlight, check for anything moving. The bugs don't like the light, and they will try to move away from it. If you see reddish brown spots on the mattress or clusters in the corners, you may have found signs of a bed bug presence.
4. Move beyond the mattress. It is key to not only check the bed, but the headboard, the tables, and any furniture in the room. If you're able to move the furniture, do so. You'll need to check behind it. Look under the phone, alarm clock, and lamps. Be sure to use your flashlight in these areas too.
5. Bag up any clothes that need to be laundered. Throughout your vacation and definitely before packing your suitcase, secure any clothes that have been worn into a sealed plastic bag. Bed bugs are drawn to your scent, and sealing up your clothes is a great way of preventing a ride home for these pests.
6. Report any findings immediately. If you're staying in a hotel, be sure to immediately report what you have found to the staff. It is safe to stay in the hotel. Bed bugs found in one room does not mean that they are in all rooms, nor is it a testament to the cleanliness of the hotel. If you do to stay, be sure that your new room is not adjacent to the room with the bed bugs. One good rule is to try and go two floors up or down (if possible).
The important thing to remember during your holiday travels, is to keep a cool head. As long as you know what you're looking for, you can prevent bringing home bed bugs. Remember, bed bugs are not known to transmit diseases to humans. However, they are a hugs nuisance. Keep a cool head, and know how to stay proactive.
If you do find that you may have brought home some unwelcome visitors after your holiday travels, have no fear. Give us a call at Champion Pest Management. We will come to your home, complete an inspection and discuss the best options available for keeping your home bed bug free.
Halloween is tucked away.
We've all slept off the turkey comas.
Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday have all come and gone.
It's not quite December 1st, but maybe even for the Scroogiest of us all it's time to sit back and usher in the Christmas holiday. With that, comes, for many, the hunt for the perfect Christmas tree. Now, a Christmas tree entry isn't exactly what you'd expect from a pest control company blog, but believe me, the choices you make about your tree could greatly affect your need of an exterminator this Holiday season.
The Christmas tree is probably one of the most iconic Christmas image, but it's definitely one that is not safe from debate:
Douglas or Fir.
Homemade ornaments or Elegant themes.
Let the kids lend a hand or Move all the ornaments after they've gone to bed.
White lights or Colorful lights.
One tree or Two.
And of course.....
Real or Fake
With over 35 million trees harvested each year and only about 10 million artificial trees sold a year, it's not too soon to rule out the popularity of the live tree. I mean come on, it's an over 1 billion dollar industry!
Let's talk a little though about what you should know about those amazing live trees after you strap them to the top of your car and head home singing carols along the way.
As with bringing anything involving nature into your home, when buying a live tree, you run the risk of opening your doors to a possible 25,000 unwelcome Christmas guests. Okay, Okay. I'm not saying all this to scare you, or to send you running to your local box store to purchase a pre-lit, artificial tree. Believe me, I'm not trying to ruin any traditions. You simply cannot replace that magical smell of a fresh cut tree.
While aphids and mites are just a couple of pests possibly trimming your tree this year. You should be on the look out for other signs of bugs as well. Adelgids (these make your tree look as though they have a slight dusting of snow on it--festive right?), Bark Beetles, and even Praying Mantises are known to be found in evergreens. A Christmas tree filled with pests may not quite be what's on your Christmas list, and the thought of bringing home a bounty of bugs may leave you a little Bah Humbug, but don't let these thoughts bring you down. Be sure to check your tree thoroughly before bringing it inside your home. a goof idea would be to place it in your garage for a few days on a white sheet, and shake it vigorously. Just think, there are always the stockings to hang by the chimney with care.
No fear though. Champion Pest Management is here if you do happen to have a few extra visitors this holiday season. Don't be afraid to give us a call.
Champion Pest Management is a locally owned, family run, pest control company operating in Charleston, SC and the surrounding areas.