Bed bugs are back!

In 1978 The Rolling Stones sang these lyrics in their classic, “Shattered” 

“To live in this town you must be tough, tough, tough, tough, tough!

You got rats on the West Side

Bed bugs Uptown

What a mess this town’s in tatters, I’ve been shattered”

42 years later, and guess who’s still kicking? 

The Rolling Stones AND bed bugs. Sorry friends, but they are back, with a vengeance, and not just in Manhattan. (This blog should have come with a disclaimer…”this post may make you itchy”. )

Some of us may not remember the old days of bed bugs, back when people traveled with their own pesticides in their luggage. When you sprayed your motel mattress down because it was assumed bed bugs were present. This new generation of bed bugs is stronger, more resilient than ever and it takes more than a good travel sized spray down to attack. 

How do bed bugs get into my clean home? 

Bed bugs have nothing to do with cleanliness. They are called “hitchhikers” and will ride home on the bottoms of your shoes, your luggage, purses and backpacks. They usually hide out on soft or upholstered surfaces like beds, sofas, carpets.  They can even travel from room to room in apartment buildings, five star hotels and dormitories. All bed bugs are looking for is a good meal and a place to hide, they don’t need trash or filth, just your blood.

Speaking of blood.

Bed bugs like a good “blood meal”. Yes, that is a term that is hard to erase from memory. Some can go for almost two years without a “blood meal”. After engorging themselves on your blood (while you sleep), they scurry away to hide in the seams of a mattress, under the baseboards, sometimes behind the paintings on the walls. If there is an infestation, they can be found in the folds of curtains, and seams of sofas and chairs. 

Are you afraid to even look for them?

This is totally understandable. Even the signs of bed bugs make you need a shower. Look for these signs of bed bugs:

Tiny blood stains that look like rust on your sheets or pillowcases.

Dark/rusty spots of bedbug excrement on bedding, mattresses and walls. 

Fecal spots, eggs shells or shed skins in hiding places.

A musty odor. 

Is anyone else feeling dirty and itchy yet?

Could this blog get any yuckier?

Imagine researching bed bugs for a living. Then having to go to a hotel and actually get some sleep! But just in case you need more, here’s a video that shows bed bugs in action. Now that you have been fully exposed to everything you could ever want to know about bed bugs, you must be asking….

What can I do to get rid of bed bugs? Or better yet, why did they come back?

The world thought it had taken care of bed bugs forever. Two things happened. First, the bed bugs became stronger and more resistant to the poison. Second, the pesticide used to kill them was banned. This can be likened to how doctors tell us to not overuse antibiotics because we will become resistant to them. Not that we want to have anything in common with bed bugs.

Here’s where we come in.

When you suspect you have bed bugs (you may notice tiny bites on your body) it’s a really good idea to call professionals ASAP. There are plenty of DIY applications you can attempt, but how comfortable do you feel with baking soda getting rid of a pest that eats a “blood meal” and hides in your bed? Exactly.

 If you call us at Lawn and Pest Solutions, we will come inspect your home and if needed, treat it very thoroughly. Then we will come back in 7-14 days and treat it again (because those eggs will have hatched by then). You will have some work to do as well. Our technicians will leave you with a checklist of things to do, like washing and drying all linens with high heat. Getting rid of bed bugs is not fun, it’s not easy, but it can be done. For most, the worst part about bed bugs is just knowing they are there. Count me in that number. 

Our pest technicians are making their way all over the Memphis area, North Mississippi, Oxford, Tupelo and of course, New Albany. Let us help you fight the war against pests, as we say, “you shouldn’t have to live with them!” Contact us here for a quote.

Can cockroaches survive a nuclear attack?

Why did I google this anyway?

The topic of this blog was meant to be “Can cockroaches survive a nuclear attack?”. It didn’t take long to find out the answer to that is no, according to this article and many others. You could probably guess that this topic has been studied by everyone from scientists to extreme game show participants and many in between. 

Well that was easy.

After discovering so quickly that roaches would not survive a nuclear blast, I felt the need to press on. Have you ever seen something so gross and disgusting that you felt like you needed to take a bath just from seeing it? That’s how I felt after researching cockroaches this week. There were just so many grossly compelling questions following the old nuclear attack one, I had to google on.

Google regret.

What is one thing you have ever googled and then regretted? For me, it was what happens if you step on a cockroach. For the record, baby roaches don’t go running, and that’s a relief. But unfortunately, I continued reading. When you step on or “squish” a cockroach, it’s eggs are not released. That’s because it’s eggs are stored in a hard shell, all around your house! Did I mention they multiply quickly?

Oh, it gets worse.

More google regret came when I clicked on “what happens if you put a cockroach in the microwave?”. First of all, I think we should ask why anyone would put a roach in a microwave. I digress. Cockroaches are cold blooded and can live without food for a week. They also have very little body water, so they can survive a long amount of time in a microwave oven. That’s also why they can only survive one week without water. You can read more about this here if you need further motivation to take a shower.

It’s not over.

“How to prevent cockroaches” has suddenly moved up in my search.  A few things you can do at home include getting rid of dirty dishes in the sink, garbage, pet food on the floor and leftover food sitting out. Of course, after reading way too many articles about cockroaches this week,  even I know that the cleanest house on Earth is still susceptible to roaches. You can clean, remove excess moisture from your home, seal up cracks. Haul off your newspapers and cardboard, mop frequently, declutter, wash dishes…are you tired yet? This is going to take teamwork. 

The Lawn and Pest Solutions Team

Cockroaches are one of the oldest living insects on the planet, so it’s going to take a team to rid your home now and forever. Our licensed pest professionals can come and launch a personal attack on the roaches who are hiding under your baseboards, fridge, stove, dishwasher. While we need you to do your part of the fight against roaches, our people have the right tools and insecticides that are targeted to the specific type of roaches for your area. Call us here , get a quote, and let our guys get right out to your home and begin the war on pests.

Somebody’s watching me

It was probably a spider watching Rockwell, don’t you think?

Do you think you have a spider problem? What makes a spider a spider? Here are some numbers to help you know what it is that may be watching you.

A spider has: 8 legs, 2 body regions, 0 wings, 0 antennae, 3 OR 4 pair of eyes. Yes, that’s 6-8 eyes staring at you from that dark little corner in your closet.

How do spiders get in your house?

Oh, just about any old way you can imagine. He boldly marches in your home looking for food, warmth, a drink. He loves living in that fancy pair of shoes you only wear once a year. He sleeps in your winter coat pockets, relaxes in the box of old baby clothes in the basement, and terrorizes the other bugs in your pantry. He may have entered while traveling on a plant you brought in for the winter. Perhaps he was lounging on that firewood you hauled in. He’s living with you, he’s not paying rent and this is a problem.

How do you get spiders out of your house?

One way to get rid of this new resident is by allowing his mate to handle this matter and let “nature run her course.”  Since spiders feed on insects including other spiders, many times the female spider will make a snack of her mate. That may be an option, but logistically it will only help with 50% of your problem. Thankfully, there are more effective solutions. 

Here are few things YOU can do to make your home less inviting to spiders:

-Spiders don’t like to be disturbed. Before bringing seasonal decor inside, shake out items like Easter baskets, spring decor, swimsuits, beach toys. These dark and quiet spaces have made a lovely home for your spider friends.

-Inspect anything that has been sitting on the ground outside before you bring it in. Mail, deliveries and bags of groceries sitting in the driveway for a moment are all easy modes of transportation to a spider looking to enter your home.

-Seal up cracks and crevices, damaged window screens, cracks in your siding, look around seasonally for points of entry. 

If you feel like maybe the spiders have already claimed their turf in your own home, it is probably time to call one of our trained, certified technicians. While spiders are definitely not the worst “pests” to invade your home, you don’t have to live with them. 

We can help.

Walking through cobwebs, wondering “is this a spider bite?” or arguing over who gets to step on the next one could be a thing of the past in your home. To get a situation like an infestation of spiders under control, Lawn and Pest Solutions of New Albany, MS can come in and use applications tailored specifically to spiders, just contact us!