ABC Blog

Do Bed Bugs Smell? What Homeowners Need To Know

Decorative pillows on a gray bed

Some people wonder if bed bugs give off a particular scent that can signal their presence in the home. Others are wanting to know whether bed bugs themselves possess a sense of smell; if they do, there might be odors that bed bugs find repellent that could be used to deter them from infesting people’s homes.

Bed bugs do give off a certain, unpleasant scent when they’re disturbed, which is related to the pheromones they emit when alarmed. Some people have described it as a sweet or coriander-like scent, while others have said it’s a musty or moldy smell. This scent might not be obvious to everyone, however—some people can’t smell it at all—and it might only be detected when there are lots of bed bugs present, indicating a heavy infestation.

This means that if there are bed bugs present somewhere in your home, chances are, you won’t smell them—and if you … Read Full Post »

Bed Bugs In My Couch: What Should I Do?

bed bugs in a couch in a brown living room

If you’ve had an experience that led you to suspect the presence of bed bugs in your couch, you might wonder if that’s even possible. The name “bed bugs,” after all, suggests these pests are found in people’s sleeping areas, not their living room furniture. But anyone who’s ever dozed off on the couch while watching their favorite TV show and then later found lines of itchy red bumps on their skin knows that isn’t true.

Bed bugs definitely don’t restrict themselves to beds, although they are most often found in places where people sleep. That’s because they are safest when they feed on the blood of their victims while they are still, often when a person is fast asleep. Bed bugs have been known to infest many types of furniture and spaces where people spend lots of time, including couches, sectionals and easy chairs. So, if you suspect there are … Read Full Post »

Can Bed Bugs Live In Carpet? Your Questions Answered

A bed bug crawling on someone

If you’re currently dealing with a bed bug infestation, or wonder if what you have seen in your home are bed bugs, you probably are wondering where these pests can be hiding. Since we typically can’t feel a bed bug bite, it can be difficult to know when we are getting bitten, even if we understandably assume it’s in our beds. To make matters even more complicated, some people don’t have an allergic reaction to a bed bug bite until as long as two weeks after it happens. With that in mind, how can you find these tiny pests? Can bed bugs hide in your carpet? Where else do they tend to spend time?

Yes, bed bugs can live in carpet, as well as in and around just about every upholstered surface in your home. A bed bug’s narrow body lets it hide easily in the smallest cracks and crevices, including … Read Full Post »

How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs Permanently

A bed with a gray comforter and yellow and white pillows

Anyone who has dealt with a bed bug infestation has probably wondered how to get rid of bed bugs permanently. Considered by many in the pest control industry as among the most difficult problems to resolve, bed bugs can live for several months without eating, and are capable of laying up to 5 eggs each day, and over 500 over a lifetime. Able to survive in temperatures ranging from almost freezing to 122 degrees Farenheit, bed bugs are extremely resilient. To make matters worse, newly-hatched bed bugs are so tiny that they can squeeze in between the stitches of a mattress.  These are just a few reasons why homeowners often skip DIY treatments and enlist the help of a professional, who is equipped with the products, techniques and experience needed to resolve an infestation both quickly and effectively.

If you believe you may have a bed bug problem, you should know that … Read Full Post »

Bed Bug Feces And Other Signs Of An Infestation

Bed bug feces on white fabric

You’ve found strange black spots in your bed—dots about the size of poppy seeds, some of which might bleed like a spot of ink on the fabric of your sheets, pillows or mattress. When you go through all the possibilities, you might have wondered whether what you have seen is bed bug feces.

If you’ve noticed these tiny black spots, and especially if you also have itchy bites anywhere on your body, bed bugs are a very real possibility. Bed bugs are feared by many for good reason and, unfortunately, these tiny pests can infest even the cleanest of homes. While anyone can fall victim to a bed bug problem, they are a particular risk in the homes of people who travel a lot or who frequent garage sales and thrift shops. Traveling and acquiring second-hand furniture and other used items are two activities that could lead to inadvertently bringing home … Read Full Post »

What Do Baby Bed Bugs Look Like?

What Do Baby Bed Bugs Look Like

The emotional toll of a bed bug infestation can be significant, in part because these tiny pests are so difficult to eradicate. For one thing, they hide in discreet locations, making them almost impossible to find. If you are currently dealing with bed bugs in your home, you’re probably wondering, what do baby bed bugs look like? Do they bite? And, perhaps most importantly, how can I get rid of these pests?

Baby bed bugs, which are also called nymphs, are actually similar in appearance to their adult counterparts, except for some key differences—mainly their size and their color. After hatching from tiny white eggs that are so small that they are difficult to see with the naked eye, bed bugs go through five stages before reaching adulthood.

First-stage nymphs are tiny (less than 1/16″)  and a pale, yellowish-white color. After feeding, baby bed bugs’ abdomens turn red due to the blood … Read Full Post »

Bed Bug Or Tick: What’s In My Home?

bed bug or tick

After spotting a tiny bug in your house, you are understandably freaked out. Could it be a bed bug, or was it actually a tick? If you’re being honest with yourself, it could be any kind of pest, and you wouldn’t know the difference. Even if you did, these insects are so small it can be hard to tell them apart.

While bed bugs and ticks feed on blood and most types are flat and rounded, that is not always the case. If you are wondering if it’s a bed bug or tick that you have seen, you should know that bed bugs are usually found indoors, while ticks most often inhabit wooded or grassy areas outside. While a bed bug might bite you several times when you are asleep, a tick will latch onto you and feed for several days until it’s full.

It can be hard to tell a tick … Read Full Post »

Bugs That Look Like Bed Bugs: Identification Tips

The idea of a bug sharing the space where you sleep is not one to take lightly—especially if it’s one that bites! If you spotted a tiny bug wandering around your bedroom, your first instinct might have been to assume that it is a bed bug. However, there are more bugs that look like bed bugs than you might expect. While the complete list could be quite long, the short list is fleas, immature roaches, booklice, carpet beetles, bat bugs and ticks.

So, how can you know if that minuscule visitor was really a bed bug? Here are a few characteristics of bed bugs that can tip you off to the presence of these bloodsucking creatures:

  • Adults are reddish-brown to black in color.
  • A bed bug that hasn’t had a blood meal recently is usually oval-shaped and flat. After feeding, these parasites will swell up, become longer and change color to redder to … Read Full Post »

Bed Bug Bites Vs. Flea Bites: How Can I Tell Them Apart?

Bed Bug Bites Vs. Flea Bites

You woke up and noticed weird bites on your body. You look pointedly at Fido as he scratches behind his ear with a little more fervor than usual. Does he have fleas? Or maybe you have bed bugs? How would you know if you have bed bug bites versus flea bites, anyway?

If you’ve struggled to determine exactly what type of bug bit you, you are not alone. Most insect bites result in itching, and many leave a little bump or red mark where you were bitten. Why would it even matter which creature is biting you? For starters, bed bugs and fleas can pose different risks for you, your family and your pets. In this blog post, we’ll review the differences between these bugs’ feeding patterns, what their bites look like and how to treat a bite once you have settled on which creature is responsible.

Fleas: The Most Likely Culprit

A … Read Full Post »

Does Lavender Really Repel Bed Bugs?

Does lavender really repel bed bugs

Waking up in the morning to find yourself covered in itchy, irritated red bumps is a shocking experience. If the bumps are situated in lines along your skin instead of in more random clusters, you might be even more concerned, as that is a common bite pattern associated with bed bugs. Instantly, you may wonder if these unwelcome pests are infesting your mattress or other areas of your home. If you’ve ever heard about natural repellents alleged to be effective in controlling these insects, you might wonder, does lavender really repel bed bugs?

Unfortunately, lavender is not an effective method to keep bed bugs away. Public health officials recognize the significant psychological toll an infestation can have and advise against DIY bed bug control methods and in favor of enlisting an experienced pest professional to deal with the problem. In order to completely eliminate bed bugs from your home, entomologists recommend … Read Full Post »