Category Archives: Bed Bugs Vermont

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Vermont Bed Bug Hotel and Apartment Reports …

Bed Bug Hotel and Apartment Reports. Click on the city below to find our latest bed bug reports in Vermont on hotels. To report a new bed bug incident, navigate to our city page below to see further details.

Recommended tips after hotel check-in: 1. Pick up the mattresses in the rooms and look under it. Check around the edges of the box springs. 2. Check under the box spring. 3. Lift up each headboard an lay it on the bed. Carefully inspect the hole where the headboard was lifted out of. Also, inspect all niches and corners of the headboard. 4. If you decide to stay in the hotel, do not put any clothes in dressers. Keep them in your luggage and your dirty clothes in plastic bags.

1. July 15, 20172. We inspected the room when we checked in, but not the area of the bed that was pushed close to the wall. We stayed overnight and the next morning saw a bed bug running across th...

As I was falling asleep with the lights still on I felt something crawling on me. I grabbed it and took photos and then killed it. I confirmed it was a bed bug. The resort put me in another unit. ...

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Vermont’s Got a Growing Bedbug Problem – and, Yes, They …

Bill Wards map of Burlington is dotted with red-topped pushpins. On his desk sit three plastic test tubes, taped off at the top, with specimens collected from local homes.

The items are evidence of a troubling trend: bedbugs. Last year, Wards code-enforcement office confirmed a single infestation in the city. So far this year, Ward has seen 12 bedbug cases and he believes the number is larger.

Theres a lot of embarrassment that goes with it, so Im sure theres a great deal of underreporting, he reasons.

While almost half the bedbug reports have come from the Old North End, the problem isnt confined to Burlingtons low-income neighborhoods. Nearly every section of the city has been affected, Ward says. The problem is so bad that Ward is convening a bedbug summit on August 18 with Vermont Tenants Inc. and the Vermont Apartment Owners Association.

For years, New York, Las Vegas and other U.S. cities have waged losing battles against bedbugs bloodsucking insects that crawl out of used furniture, mattresses and suitcases at night to feed off their human hosts. Vermont had largely avoided the problem, which tends to be worse in multiunit rental properties in urban areas.

But local and state health officials and private exterminators all say theyve noticed an uptick in bedbug reports over the last two years and they expect the problem to get worse before it gets better. While no state agency counts the number of cases, anecdotal evidence suggests a growing problem.

I get a half-dozen calls a week on them, says state entomologist Jon Turmel, noting bedbug infestations show up in all types of housing. Until the last three years, I probably got a half-dozen calls in the whole 30 years that Ive been here.

Turmels office at the Vermont Agency of Agriculture also receives suspected bedbug specimens from renters and homeowners in the mail. Sometimes they are bedbugs, other times theyre ladybugs, western conifer seed bugs even pocket lint.

Ward, Turmel and other experts all point to the same causes for the trend: people bringing bedbugs home in their luggage; bugs getting passed in used and refurbished furniture, especially mattresses, picked off the curb or from secondhand stores; and decreased use of pesticides, particularly DDT, which was outlawed in the 1970s.

Hotels, motels and storage areas used to have pest-control operators come in and treat on a monthly basis, Turmel says. They dont do that anymore.

Bedbugs are visible to the naked eye but often hide out in cracks in furniture, floors and walls. The apple-seed-sized adults have flat, rusty-red, oval bodies. Unlike ticks and fleas, they arent parasites and dont live on their hosts. In fact, bedbugs can survive several months without food or water. They do not fly or jump.

Not everyone develops visible marks from the nocturnal bites. Those who do may often get them in row, along a vein, or find small bloodstains on their bedsheets. The bites might look like mosquito bites or swell to red welts.

I would say its like fleas on your dog, says Austin Sumner, the state epidemiologist for environmental health. If you get a bad infestation, it can make you very uncomfortable. It can be itchy, [and] if you scratch it too much it can get infected.

Sumner says bedbugs are considered a nuisance but not a public-health risk, because they havent been shown to transmit disease. Theyre not a product of being dirty, Sumner says. All they want to do is live close to where you live and drink your blood for eight to 12 minutes every night.

Bedbugs are notoriously hard to get rid of. If they occupy just one dwelling, according to Burlingtons ordinance, the tenant is responsible for getting rid of them. If they spread to other properties owned by the same landlord, he or she is on the line.

Warren Barich owns EcoHeat, a Colchester-based company that exterminates bedbugs by heating entire houses to 140 degrees for three to four hours, which kills them. Barich has heat-treated 478 properties for bedbugs over the last several years in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and Maine. Hes done around 50 jobs in Vermont, including several in St. Johnsbury, which Barich says has been particularly hard hit.

The epidemic has been throughout the United States, says Barich, whos been heat-treating infestations for 12 years, at approximately $950 per job. Ive been preaching here for a long time. People didnt want to listen.

Paddy Reagan and Jenny Martin went through hell trying to rid their Burlington public-housing apartment of bedbugs last summer. Every morning, Martin and her daughter, Greta, would wake with red welts over their arms and legs. Reagan stayed awake several nights to try to catch them, and watched as one crawled onto the bed sheet toward his girlfriend.

It was really freaky, Reagan says. It got to the point where I was tripping out looking for them, thinking I was seeing them when I wasnt.

The Burlington Housing Authority brought in a pest-control company that sprayed the apartment, a job that usually costs around $450. When Reagan and Martin returned, their couch was soaked with spray, but the bugs were still alive. A few days later, their bite patterns returned. Even after moving out and chucking most of their belongings in a Dumpster, they continued to be bitten.

Desperate, the couple twice rented bedbug-sniffing dogs from a company in Connecticut. The specially trained dogs one a beagle, the other a Jack Russell terrier allowed Reagan and Martin to eradicate problem spots with precision, rather than bombing the place with pesticides. Price tag: $1000.

The couple was so impressed, theyve put a down payment on their own bedbug-sniffing dog and plan to launch a business in January called Vermont Bed Bug Dog.

We love the idea of buying used stuff, but its a scary idea that you might be bringing bedbugs with you, says Reagan, who believes he picked up the critters on a trip to Portland, Maine. We want to work with [used furniture stores] and check them once a week, so people can feel comfortable going there again. They could put a sign out Inspected by Bed Bug Sniffing Dog.

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Bed Bug Guide for Landlords and Tenants | RentLaw.com

BED BUGS Bed Bugsare the little creatures that may come out at night and invade your bed or furniture like couches or mattresses. They seem to prefer human and other warm blooded creatures. Bed bug infestations were common in the United States before World War II. But with improvements in hygiene, and widespread use of DDT until it was banned, the bugs nearly vanished. However, they remained active outside the US.

HOW BED BUGS OPERATE

1. We travel out of the country and the bed bugs latch on to you, your clothing and things you pack in your luggage for the trip back to the US. 2. We have visitors and new residents coming to the US each day from foreign countries. 3. When we travel we stay in hotels or other accommodations that may have a bed bug problem(s). In Multi-family housing units, it is believed the bed bug can travel through duct work, cracks between units (they dont have to be big)- tenants furniture being moved in and out allows simple transfer around the building.

Its possible for one of you to be bitten and another resident in your home not.

In most Bed Bug laws enacted or in to be enacted, Bedbug means an insect of the species Cimex lectularius, commonly referred to as a bedbug

WHAT DO THEY LOOK LIKE

Adult bedbugs are reddish-brown, with a flat oval shape, and wingless, with microscopic hairs. They dont move fast, so you should be able to spot them. Bed Bugs CANNOT FLY. Bedbugs can live for a year or longer without feeding but they normally try to feed every five to ten days. Bedbugs that go dormant for lack of food often live longer than a year, while well-fed specimens typically live six to nine months. Bedbugs will appear at night, when they need to eat (your blood) and sense the hear given off by your body. KEEP CLEAN and CLUTTER FREE Vacuum Furniture walls, wall paper, cracks in floors and near beds bed frame, box spring etc. CLEAN. Keep clean. Vacuum often and empty out the canister or bag. Wipe down walls and wash your linens. bed sheets, shams etc. Try not to have much clutter. HOWEVER, REGARDLESS of how clean you are, you may still wind up with a bed bug problem TENANTS, LANDLORDS, AND BED BUGS THE LAW In 2004, a Bedford New York Judge made the following remark in a Bed Bug Lawsuit Although bedbug are classified as vermin, they are unlike the more common situation of vermin such as mice and roaches, which, although offensive, do not have the effect on ones life as bedbugs do, feeding upon ones blood in hoards [sic] nightly turning what is supposed to be bed rest or sleep into a hellish experience, Judge Bedford wrote. InNew York Cityand many other states, towns and cities, landlords are now responsible for getting rid of bed bugs in infested buildings and units and they must pay for extermination.

WHATS A LANDLORD TO DO? DO YOU INSPECT EVERY PIECE OF ITEM A TENANT MOVES IN WITH OR CHECK THEM EVERY DAY BEFORE THEY ENTER THE BUILDING, HOUSE OR APARTMENT?? In New Jersey, seeASSEMBLY, No. 3203. Lots of requirements for both landlords to notify tenants and tenants to notify the landlord. Since Im a NJ landlord, Im still trying to figure it out. The state holds landlords responsible for extermination in multi-unit buildings of three or more apartments if the bugs are found in two or more units or in common areas.. BED BUGS and LAWYERS My friend, a landlord, is convinced that a layer was the first to bring bed bugs back to the US and deploy them. WHY? It was and is another line of business. Landlords might think they can use (blame) a a particular tenant for infesting their building, apartment or home with the bug while a tenant may blame a landlord for allowing (by not regularly exterminating for) the bug or allowing tenants who the landlord should of know have or might have the bug or not informing the tenant that there was, could be or was unsure if there is, was, was not, what if. a bed bug problem.Find a Lawyer What came first the chicken or the egg? Is the glass half full or half empty.what came first the tenant or the bed bug? Whose Bed Bug is it? Exterminator If you choose to, you may call an exterminator who will most likely come back every month to spray. Your landlord MAY NOT BE RESPONSIBLE for the problem, unless local or state law state otherwise.

Sleep tight, dont let the bed bugs bite.

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Pests and Bed Bugs | Vermont Department of Health

Pests in and around our homes can be a nuisance. Pests include insects (e.g. cockroaches, bed bugs, wasps, and garden bugs), rodents (e.g. mice and rats), and weeds. The pesticides, or chemicals, we use to treat pests can cause serious health problems. Pesticides can contaminate our indoor environment, cause and trigger allergies and asthma, and be especially dangerous to children, pregnant women, and pets.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a safer, effective, and environmentally friendly method used to control pests that is based on common-sense principles and science. This method focuses on minimizing the use of hazardous pesticides by first using knowledge of the life cycles of pests and how they interact with their environment to figure out the best ways to control the problem. If chemicals must be used, safer pesticides are chosen.

Be very cautious about using pesticides yourself. Pesticides can be hazardous to people and pets. If you choose to use a pesticide, or a licensed pest control professional suggests you use one, follow these precautions:

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has more information on IPM and Safe Pest Control.

Bed bugs are small insects that feed on human blood. They are usually active at night when people are sleeping. Adult bed bugs have flat, rusty-red-colored oval bodies. About the size of an apple seed, they are big enough to be easily seen, but often hide in cracks in furniture, floors, or walls. When bed bugs feed, their bodies swell and become brighter red. They can live for several months without food or water.

Bed bugs bite, but they do not transmit disease. Bed bugs painlessly feed on their host, injecting a tiny amount of saliva in the process, which can result in mild to severe allergic reactions. Many people do not react to bed bug bites, although the bite may leave a small welt. These welts do not have a red spot in the center like flea bites. Excessive scratching of these bites is highly discouraged as it can lead to secondary infections.

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The dryer FAQ: doing the bed bug laundry – Bed bugs: news …

Subtitle: killing the little b@#$%^&s

Attention: the FAQ below was written before the invention of a tool which many readers will find useful. The Packtite allows people to easily use heat to remove bed bugs from items which cant go in a washer or dryer on hot, such as unwashable clothing, books, papers, shoes, etc. You can read more in the Packtite FAQ.

Laundry Its common for pest control operators in North America to require customers to launder all their clothing to kill bed bugs. While people are often told to wash on hot and dry on hot, a hot dryer alone is sufficient for doing the bed bug laundry.

Consider this brief article in PCT Online (Jan. 2007) that rounds up information provided by bed bug researchers in a panel at the 2006 National Pest Management Association Conference. Whats interesting is that the researchers cover a wide variety of topics (from the efficacy of various pesticides to the usefulness (or not) of vacuuming, steaming, and hot dryers.

I was intrigued by University of Kentucky entomologist Michael Potters assertion that a normal machine wash would kill bed bugs (normal as in, not hot ?), and five minutes in a hot dryer would kill bed bugs and eggs. I said Id like to see more data on thisI did not doubt it at all, but is it really so? Since a wash wont kill eggs, this must be why the hot wash / hot dry combo are always recommended in university fact sheets. Were told the dryer is what kills the eggs. But I think Ive only seen Dr. Potter being quoted as saying five minutes drying was enough.

A hot dryer apparently runs at about 180 F. I doubt this temperature is achieved after five minutes, though. Can five minutes on a temperature somewhere below 194 F be enough, when companies providing thermal treatments do so at a core temperature of 140 F for four hours? (Winston clarifies this in the comments.)

But this is the only source Ive seen on five minutes being enough (though it has been quoted in newspaper articles). Personally, habit and skepticism have had me recommending drying for over an hour. I always say, dry on hot till its bone dry, then add 20 minutes.

But then, dear Reader, I confess, I dotted my bed with lavender oil for months, hoping its reputed repellent properties would keep bed bugs away. I figured it probably wouldnt, and it didnt. But it was hard to give up this habit, since I believed it might be helping. That is kind of irrational, but I guess thats what sleeping 4 hours a night does for you.

Since some believe washing and drying and storing clothing properly can make such a difference to bed bug treatment, I emphasized that we want to be sure were doing it right. It would be such a blessing for people to only have to dry things on hot for five minutes. It would save not only time, but lots of clothing items that simply cant handle washing on hot and drying for an hour on hot. For those reasons, I hoped we could get more information on the research that was done.

So then, I remembered one motto here at Bedbugger Ask, and ye shall receive. (Information, people, only ask for information. If you need $500, it aint gonna happen.)

And lo and behold, Hopelessnomo pointed me to more information that is available from Dr. Michael Potter (and colleagues), in the PCT article Killing them softly: battling bed bugs in sensitive accounts (1/19/2007):

Bed bugs often infest bedding, clothing and other personal belongings which cannot be treated with insecticides. An oft-mentioned way to de-bug such items is laundering yet to our knowledge, no testing has been done to verify effectiveness. A simple experiment was conducted to study this question. Three groups of live bed bug adults, nymphs and eggs were placed in small nylon mesh pouches which were then placed inside cotton socks. The bed bug-provisioned socks (along with a full load of clothing) were then run through a standard wash cycle using hot water. A second trial was run with similarly infested socks placed only in a clothes dryer. The bed bug-laden socks were accompanied by a load of unwashed clothing and subjected to high heat (greater than 175 F) for five minutes. No bed bugs or eggs survived the washing or drying cycles, suggesting that either regimen, alone or in combination, is effective.

Clothing, footwear, area rugs, toys, stuffed animals, backpacks and other non-launderable items can conveniently be de-infested by heating them for a period of time in a dryer at most settings. For reference, a typical clothes dryer run for five minutes at low, medium or high heat produced temperatures of about 140, 150 and 180F, respectively, amongst a bundle of dry clothing plenty hot to kill bed bugs. While certain items may require professional dry-cleaning, utilizing conventional washers and dryers may help limit the spread of bed bugs to these establishments.

This information suggests that either a hot machine wash, or a hot dryer running for five minutes with already dry clothing, will kill bed bugs and eggs. As Nomo suggests in the comments below (written before I added this update) five minutes with dry items is not so different from what weve been recommending at Bedbugger all along: bone dry plus 20 minutes. Well, make that bone dry plus five. I dont blame if you if, like me, youre a bit skeptical and want to stick to twenty minutes past dry that may well be a good idea and we wont call you neurotic.

As John sang, Whatever gets you through the night, its alright, its alright. For Bedbuggers, thats another motto around here. The promise of a good nights sleep is the grail. And spending less time doing your bed bug laundry (i.e. drying on hot and skipping the wash cycle if your clothing and linens are already clean) is a good thing.

As of 2012, theres a new product which will help determine if the required temperatures are reached for heat treatment. Although a hot dryer should be running very much higher than 120F as noted above, if you have any doubts about the machine youre using, and want to be sure your dryer hits 120F, you can use Thermaspot temperature sensors (made by Packtite) to test this. Just attach them to the inside of one or more items, and run them through the dryer. If the dryer hits 120F, the sensor will turn from white to black. Read more about Thermaspot here.

The rest of the information from Killing them softly is also useful. Let me give you the highlights from what Dr. Potter et. al. recommend:

Discarding infested stuff: yes, but only if necessary. Seek a qualified PCOs advice (qualified = knows the enemy well). If you are tossing it, wrap it well (and mark it!) and realize that if your neighbors or surrounding community pick up the item, they may come back via a crack in your shared wall, a visit to a dry cleaners, or the local diner. That should make anyone think twice and thrice.

Encasement: use high quality encasings that wont tear.

Vacuums: harder to pick up bed bugs and eggs than you think; doesnt really help unless you hit their harborage areas in a targeted way. Discard bags carefully (bed bugs can survive the trip down the hose), and do not use vacuum brushes, since they can lodge in the bristles. The dirty little so-and-sos.

Steam

The steam portion of this FAQ has now been incorporated into the new FAQ on steam: How to kill bed bugs with steam. Its relevant both to treating your home and furniture and steamable stuff too.

Seasonal temperatures (putting stuff outside)

Regarding seasonal temperatures, backpackers take note: We get a lot of questions at Bedbugger about whether leaving stuff outside worksand occasionally hear from people who tried it and failed. I think it comes down to the temperature, the length of time, and what you provided the bed bugs to nestle in. (The last complaint I heard was someone whose down comforter had bed bugs surviving the cold well, perhaps it was a very warm down comforter, and maybe it just was not cold enough outside to freeze them within it.) Dr. Potter says, in Killing them softly:

Lethal outdoor temperatures have long been employed in the battle against bed bugs. In the tropics, infested bedding is often left out in the sun and such methods can also be used during warm seasons in this country. Its risky, however, to rely on ambient heating to achieve lethal temperatures in all harborage locations. Wrapping items in plastic before placing them outdoors in a sunny location (preferably on pavement), produces higher internal temperatures. It also pays not to over pack more trash bags with fewer items make it harder for bed bugs to find cooler places to hide. Monitoring with a thermometer is also prudent, with a target internal temperature of at least 120 F.

In colder climates, freezing might be a way to de-infest furniture and other belongings. Bed bugs and their eggs can be killed by very low temperatures, but it is difficult to achieve them without using a deep freezer. Temperatures below 0F for one to two weeks are generally believed to be needed to reliably kill all life stages. Fluctuating winter temperatures which often extend above this level are probably less effective and are currently being studied by Dr. Steven Kells at the University of Minnesota. Overall and throughout much of the country, heating tends to be a faster, more reliable option than chilling.

Some people talk about loading bed bug laundry into big garbage bags and leaving it on a porch or patio in winter. This is unlikely to be sufficient and we do not recommend it. Remember that bed bugs will seek the warmest spot and harbor there, and that the bags full of stuff may be quite insulating.

Again, if you experiment with ambient heat (which we do not recommend), at least consider using Thermaspot heat sensors (FAQ) to ensure required temperatures were reached at the core of the items.

Thanks to Dr. Potter and his team for their helpful research on how to get rid of bed bugs using heat.

And special thanks to Hopelessnomo, who mentioned the article in the forums, and directed me to further sources.

Update (7/19/2007):

Additional information on thermal, cold, steam, etc. is included in Stephen L. Doggetts Bed Bug Code of practice. See the table of contents.

Frank, at the War on Bed Bugs, also did an interesting post on hot and cold treatments. Check it out.

Update (10/4/2007):

Some people have recommended something like this for drying shoes in the dryer:

Update 12/07:

If you are thinking of using a dry cleaner for some or all of your clothing, read this FAQ first!

Update 1/08:

NotSoSnug points us to a library protocol for getting bugs out of books:

I should add that there is a librarian protocol to heat paperwork at 130degF for 3hrs to kill insects (remember to include a pan of water to keep some humidity). Any longer will melt binding glue (I know I forgot one night and it did). Also, till tape receipts are heat sensitive so they will turn dark. Annoying if you need the receipts for business!

See the Bookworm section, Paragraph #7:

http://www.unesco.org/webworld/ramp/html/r8820e/r8820e07.htm

Thanks, NotSoSnug! Update 6/2009:

For clothing which needs to be washed, you have the option of packing laundry in Bug Bags or GreenClean bags. They allow you to seal in bed bug laundry, and wash the items directly in the bag, which will dissolve in the laundry process. They provide an alternative to using and throwing away garbage bags.

Bed Bug Supply sells Bug Bags:

US Bed Bugs sells Green Clean bags:

Last updated 11/25/2012

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