Bed bugs: False alarm?

A friend reminded me yesterday that I kind-of left things hanging on the bed bug front.  When I last wrote, we had found an unknown insect on our wall and were waiting for the exterminator to come take a look at our place.

We determined, and the exterminator confirmed, that the insect we found on our wall was, in fact, not a bed bug.  It looked like nothing quite so much as a large tick, although what a tick was doing hanging out on our dining room wall, I don’t know.

Anyhow, the exterminator came and did a fairly thorough visual inspection of our mattress and foundation, and a more cursory inspection of the rest of the apartment, and found nothing — no bed bugs or signs thereof.  As a precaution, he put dust mite covers (which apparently also keep bed bugs in or out) on both our mattress and foundation, and left two traps near the bed.

That was almost two weeks ago, and so far nothing in our traps (or in those in the downstairs apartment).  The exterminator also found no bugs or blood stains downstairs.  He did find what he claimed were bed bug molts, but no one else actually saw the evidence, and I have my suspicions.

We’re also had a few more conversations with our downstairs neighbors, and, unless there is something they are not telling us, it seems like the case for bed bugs is VERY circumstantial, with nothing more than a few bug bites that could have just as easily come from mosquitoes or spiders, and the exterminator’s claim of bed bug molts.

I’ve noticed several occasions recently where their bedroom window was open several inches without the screen in place, and mosquitoes have been alive and well here since early March, so mosquito bites seem quite plausible.  (Bats entering the apartment also seems quite plausible, but, hey, at least they’d eat the mosquitoes, right?)

If our neighbors took any trips or brought something suspicious into the building recently to make them suspect bed bugs, they have not shared that information with us, so from my point of view, it seems we may have had a false alarm.

On the other hand, bed bugs can be anywhere, as evidenced by my friend’s story of a library in a small town in Iowa, where her brother-in-law is a librarian, that treats all returned library books with some kind of UV treatment for bed bugs.

Anyway, the claim downstairs is enough to disturb our peace of mind, and we’re considering paying for a bed bug sniffing dog to check the place, though even that would probably not tell us anything with 100% certainty . . . .

1 Comment

  1. EcoCatLady says:

    Whew! Well, I suppose you don’t have conclusive evidence, but I’d stop worrying if I were you, especially if the traps don’t show anything.

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