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Bedbug threat sidelines police cars


Bethlehem officers investigating a death saw the bugs in woman's home.

By Pamela Lehman, Of The Morning Call

bedbugsBethlehem police had to take four vehicles out of service for a few days for a possible bedbug contamination, an official said.

The vehicles were parked after officers were called to a death investigation shortly after midnight Friday in the 1000 block of Carlisle Street, said police Capt. David Kravatz.

The woman's death is not suspicious, police said. While inside her home, officers saw bedbugs, Kravatz said.

Four vehicles used by officers on the call were taken out of service until they could be treated for a possible bedbug contamination. By Monday afternoon, the vehicles had been decontaminated and thoroughly washed before they were put back on the road.

"It was a precautionary measure and a courtesy to our officers to take those vehicles out of service to make sure that if there are bedbugs, they don't spread anywhere else," Kravatz said.

A handful of vehicles have been taken out of service before to be treated for possible bedbug infestations, and that problem could increase due to recent record-high temperatures, Kravatz said.

But dirty police vehicles are hardly unusual and are a less-than-glamorous aspect of police work that the public may not often see, he said.

Officers are often subjected to unsanitary conditions including garbage, fleas, roaches and ticks.

Any call involving a skunk may take a police vehicle out of commission for a few days, Kravatz said.

Skunks spotted during the day are often put down by police officers, for fear the animals may be rabid. But he said some officers may be willing to remove a smelly skunk carcass to help a distressed resident.

"I've had new officers even double-bag the skunk, thinking that would contain the smell," he said. "That never works. Even though the car is scrubbed clean, it seems like that smell lingers for days."

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2012 Clark Commercial Pest Control Conference - Part 2


Jeff McGovern spoke after the morning break, beginning by asking how many technicians in the audience were carrying flashlights. Only a few. "How many flashlights do you carry in your truck?" he asked. Three, most answered. His presentation was titled "Tools of the Trade." Flashlights are essential, and not having a working one can make you lose an account.

McGovern started with Google Earth, zooming in on Florida where he lives, to illustrate how geography determines pest issues. He zoomed in further to find Palatka, where the meat-packing plant he would be discussing is sited. "You want to know a secret?" he asked. "Don't be their bug guy, or rat guy. Be a member off their team, helping to protect their assets." He zoomed in even further to look at the meat-packing plant and its surrounding area -- a bus yard, a wooded area, a railroad track, a retention pond. "What are the first four factors in pest control?" he asked, answering: "Access, food, water and harborage" -- mentioning a nearby homeless camp that keeps removing rodent bait stations. "You're a detective. Think.

What happens if a rat goes through that facility? That USDA guy's going to shut them down." McGovern, a 37-year veteran of pest management, insisted that salespeople price jobs accordingly, by the services rendered and not by the number of bait stations installed. He went around the plant using elevations to show overhanging trees and power cables, all rodent access points. "You have to look underneath, around, behind and top of," he said. "You're looking for access, food, water and harborage." Documentation is important, too.

"How many of you carry digital cameras?" he asked, telling the audience to take pictures and register those pictures' existence in the onsite logbook. McGovern mentioned a light-leak audit, at night to see what light leaks out, and by day to see what light leaks in. He also advised to make friends with the HVAC service guy and the sprinkler guy, because they can provide valuable information about rodents. "They can tell you where your problems are," he said. McGovern concluded by saying that the backbone of the pest control industry is the people out running routes in their trucks.

Rather than start by talking bed bug biology, entomologist Gail Getty began by discussing working dogs trained to sniff out bed bugs. Dogs have good days and bad days, and it's important to have a good trainer. Yadda yadda. Then she went into visual inspections, before mentioning that bed bug behaviors are cryptic, they are thigmotactic, or touchy-feely with each other, and photophobic, or afraid of light. Then she showed a pie chart on where bed bugs are most commonly found, and went into some animated recollections of personal experiences in hotel rooms. "They were just raining down on me," she described to much laughter.

Next up, traumatic insemination and how it makes female bed bugs run like crazy, thus dispersing the insects. Then she showed a series of slides from cases where she's served as an expert witness, and then she showed a series of slides from attorney Jeff Lipman's presentation on a Des Moines two-tower apartment complex and how bed bugs spread through the buildings. Then, the practical: bed bug monitors, mattress encasements, vacuums, traditional pest control materials, steam. "We know that it's always a function of time and temperature," Getty said about killing insects. She also went into heat remediation, a method of control that Clark Pest has embraced. Freezing, she also mentioned. "Not a fan," she said. "I love fumigation," she added. "I only care one thing about bed bugs," she said. "Don't bring them home." Getty's advice to customers: "Hire a professional."

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Bed Bug Innovations at Clark Pest Control



Bed Bug Innovation

Bed bugs are all over the news these days. You may have heard that these insects are turning up in many places, in homes, apartments, hotels, restaurants, stores and even airplanes. Bed bugs are keeping us very busy.

Why are they suddenly such a problem? A currently accepted explanation is that once pesticides like DDT, credited with wiping out bed bugs after World War II, were outlawed, bed bugs returned, and today there are few ways to control them effectively. The truth is that very few insects can survive temperatures above 120◦ F. Bed bugs certainly can’t, and Clark Pest Control branches have become experts at using the heat remediation process to control bed bugs.

Heat remediation is a treatment option that involves heating up rooms to around 135◦ F, and then moving the air around so it kills all life stages of the insect – eggs, nymphs and adults – wherever they’re hiding, even in cracks and crevices. By itself, heat remediation involves no pesticide use. Talk about a Clark S.M.A.R.T. way to handle a big problem!

We also offer other bed bug services, which include conventional treatments and fumigation procedures. You can get more information by calling us, or by talking with your Clark technician about what option will work best for you.


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Bed bugs buggin ya?


Bugs Without Borders: Bed Bugs Spreading Out, Digging In

The little pests travel undetected and become very attached to their new homes

Truman Lewis

What pest is popping up just about everywhere these days? Presidential bed bugscandidates, you say? Perhaps, but we were actually thinking of bed bugs. A new survey finds that the pesky devils are steadily taking over new territory.

The study, conducted by the National Pest Management Association and the University of Kentucky, surveyed U.S. pest management professionals and found that 99 percent of respondents encountered bed bug infestations in the past year. More than eight of out ten said  that bed bug infestations are increasing across the country.

This represents a sharp increase in prevalence as only 11 percent of respondents reported receiving bed bug calls more than 10 years ago.

One of the most significant findings is that bed bug encounters have become much more common in public places than the previous year, in some instances increasing by 10, 20 or nearly 30 percent.

“The increase in bed bug encounters is likely due to a combination of factors, but one thing is clear — this pest shows no signs of retreating,” noted Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. “Of most concern are the places where pest professionals are encountering bed bugs, such as schools, hospitals, and hotels/motels.”

Public vigilance is vital to controlling the spread, she said.

“Increased public awareness, education and vigilance are key in detecting and preventing bed bug infestations as these pests tend to travel undetected from place to place, breed quickly and remain one of the most challenging to treat,” added Henriksen.

Read the article in its entirity at

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Day 2 Bed bug tour - continued - Jeff Lipman- Attorney


Document your advice

PCO's are at risk of being named in a law suit. If your an apartment manager you will be named in the law suit.

Follow the action plan 

  • have the PCO provide requirements for treatment rediness
  • make sure tenants are prepared for treatment
  • have writted post treatment plan

Landlord or Motel Must Act

  • warn guests of danger (Bed Bugs)
  • evict tenants who interefere with Bed Bug eradication
  • assist tenants who are mobility impared with preperation for treatment


Ongoing duty to inestigate

  • bed bugs monitors
  • periodic inspections as recomended by the PCO

Implied warranty of habitability

you are warranting you do not have bed bugs, the landlord must search for defects.

When Liability will arise - you must check for bed bugs!

Consumer fraud statute 

Unfair deceptive acts & practices

rental units may not illeagle hazzards that endanger the occupants well-being or make the unit unfit for habitation. A landlord who rents an apart impliedly represents that it is in compliance with the applicapible health and safety codes.

UDAP statute 


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Day 2 of the Bed Bug tour - Good morning and welcome!


Day 2 of the 3 city bed bug tour is about to get underway. Today we will be blogging live from the San Jose downtown Hilton hotel.

Todays Speakers

Ted Shapas

Jim Fredericks

Jeff Lipman


Our first speaker Ted Shapas (Masters in Aquatic biology):

Bed bug biology - Up close and personal


Bed bugs are like 6 legged vampires (insects that live on human blood)

  • are small and numerous
  • spread beyond Transilvania
  • have similar schedules and diets as to the Vampire

What are they?

  • true bug
  • latin name - Cimex lectularius
  • over 100 related species
  • cousins to the box elder, plant and assassin bugs

Where do they come from?

  • evolved from plant feeding bugs
  • Lived with early man in caves 
  • Earliest  - Egypt 1320 BC

How do they eat?

  • piercing/sucking(beak)
  • feeding tube

Ted is demonstrating the feeding with an orange and a straw

  • uses 2 tubes, 1 pipes in anesthetic/anticoagulant  

How often do they feed?

  • one every 5-10 days
  • 5-10mins=a full bag

Current US Trends

  • 1 in 15 per CDC
  • 2200% increase since 2004
  • 1999-2006/4,600 increase in Australia
  • since 2000 PCO calls 81%

Why the resurgence?

  • more modile society
  • new PM methods that do not include Bed bugs
  • insecticide resistance

Additional factors

  • local pubic health departments have limited resources
  •  Municipal codes, tenants,landlords struggle to identify those responsible...Leads to:
  •  delays in treatment
  •  delays in training

Are they dangerous?

No transmission of human pathogens

  • skin rashes/allerg reacts
  • psychological effects
  • loss of sleep and productivity

Where do they live?

  • homes,apartments,hotels/motels,schools,shelters,public transportation
  • not associated with poor sanitation

More specially...

  • mattresses and bedding
  • behind headboards
  • behind picture frames
  • carpeting
  • couches
  • near host(s)

How do they get around?

  • they walk
  • they hitchhike
  • 2nd hand items

Thank you VERY much Ted!


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Bed Bug Friday - San Diego Bed bugs - Google a Bedbug Today


Once again here is an great article for our Bed bug Friday segment.

Entomologists call for eternal vigilance against a resurgent foe

By Susan Milius, Science News
Click here to find out more!SAN DIEGO—Amid the high-tech science showcased at the Entomological Society of America’s annual meeting, bedbug specialists repeatedly called for a low-tech defense: More people need to learn what a bedbug looks like.
Today’s bedbug strains often carry considerable resistance to the widespread pyrethrin-based pesticides licensed for indoor use, said Dini Miller of Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. Heat treatments, sniffer dogs or repeated courses of spraying get costly and don’t prevent repeat infestations. Do-it-yourself options, often based on vague, wishful or outright wacky notions of bedbug biology, have their perils too. “Technology alone is not going to save us,” Miller said.

What will? “Eternal vigilance,” according to a December 14 presentation by Michael Potter of the University of Kentucky in Lexington.

Headlines about the resurgence of bedbugs in the industrialized world have alarmed people about the fiercely itching bites and creepy stealth of the crevice-loving bugs. But as far as practical matters like recognizing a bedbug, “people are clueless,” Potter lamented.

So go Google photographs of the bugs and learn the signs of infestation. Pictures typically show the adults, reddish-brown and roughly as long as a pencil eraser is thick. The earlier stages are smaller and often paler.

Black smudges from bug excrement along mattress or couch seams may be easier to spot than the bugs themselves. And in spite of the name, bedbugs thrive in crevices that aren’t the least bedlike, such as the crannies of electronics. Again and again in the symposium, researchers warned against impulsive adoption of computer monitors (or comfy chairs or anything else) set out on a curb for free.

To view this article in its entirety click here

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Halloween Pests


C  Documents and Settings fspeer Desktop halloween pumpkin


Bedbugs, Spiders, Bats and Other Pests Give Homeowners Nightmares During the Halloween Season This Halloween, vampires, ghosts and goblins will not be the only ghoulish creatures haunting the night; bedbugs continue to make a startling resurgence in U.S. residences, spider infestations are up, and wildlife pests such as bats plague homeowners across the country.

Scary movies aren’t the only thing giving homeowners nightmares this season. As temperatures begin to plunge, pests everywhere begin to seek respite in the very areas you want them the least – your home.

Pests such as bedbugs are actually very similar to one of our favorite Halloween characters – the vampire. A nocturnal creature, bedbugs are bloodsucking pests. As they bite human skin, they inject an anesthetic-like liquid that numbs the skin and allows them to bite undisturbed. In fact, humans don’t usually wake up when they are being bitten; however, they do find themselves scratching circular, red, itchy welts in the morning. Luckily, a bedbug bite doesn’t transform you into a bedbug; the way a vampire bite makes you a vampire. In fact, the only good news about bedbugs is that their bites do not transmit disease to humans. Other ghoulish pests cannot make the same claim.

Bats are the culprits behind 72% of rabies cases in the U.S. between 1990 and 2002; and various species of spiders found in the United States pose serious health threats and require vigilant control procedures. “Homeowners have an easy way of waking up from this type of house nightmare,” commented National Pest Management Association Vice President of Public Affairs Missy Henriksen. “Pest professionals have the training and expertise to assist homeowners through this type of home horror.”

For further information on these nightmarish pests visit

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Bed Bug Friday - Behold the Bed Bug Registry


When Bedbugs Became News, the Bedbug Registry Became a Debated Source

Posted by Bill Krueger at 9:09 AM on Oct. 15, 2010

For three years, hardly anyone noticed the quirky little Web site Maciej Ceglowski created to keep track of bedbugs.

That was fine with Ceglowski, because it was more of a personal matter to him after bedbugs bit him one night in a Travelodge in San Francisco.

"It was good psychological therapy for me to get back at the bedbug," Ceglowski told me in a recent interview.

But bedbugs are in the news these days, with numerous reports about a rise in infestations nationwide in apartment buildings, hotels and other buildings. And suddenly Ceglowski's website,, is not so little anymore. 

At the beginning of the year, Ceglowski's website might have had 3,000 visitors a day and 20 reports of bedbug sightings. Now, the site gets up to 40,000 visitors and 100 new reports a day. (That's down from a peak of 50,000 visitors a day in August.)

ntended or not, has become a source of news. For some, it's an example of the potential of crowdsourcing, where thousands of anecdotal reports come together to identify clusters of bedbugs in cities around the country. That relies on the assumption, though, that the information reported is accurate. And that gives some people pause. 

Click here to read the entire article

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Bed Bugs take a bite out of San Francisco


SF's Bed Bug Infestation Getting Worse-44% And "hundreds of calls" Worse

Are you ready for a healthy dose of paranoia inducing bug news? Well, here it comes: the bedbug invasion of SF is only getting worse. Invasion, in the US vs. Iraq/Afghanistan sense of the word - the bugs have held a presence here for a long time but the number of troops are growing over the years. In the past couple weeks, there has been quite a surge.

The Public Health Department has seen a 44 percent increase in cases over the past three years. Since bed bugs lay and hatch eggs quicker and more plentiful when it's hot, the recent heat wave has caused a spike in cases. Since the hot weather hit, the Health Department has fielded hundreds of calls about the little beasts.

While most complaints come from single room occupancies (SROs) in the Tenderloin, SoMa and the Mission, the bugs can and do show up everywhere. It was once a common assumption that bedbugs are linked to poverty, but that is not the case. All over the country, they have infiltrated upscale condos, private residencies, movie theaters, and even corporate headquarters like the Penguin Group in Manhattan.

To really get a feel for how widespread this is, check out the National Bed Bug Registry,coincidentally started by a San Franciscan. The San Francisco page shows reports in many different neighborhoods, from the Richmond to Russian Hill.

"It's become an increasingly serious problem in all rental housing in San Francisco," said Sara Shortt, executive director of the Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco. "If it's not treated properly, it becomes explosive, and that's been part of the problem. There wasn't aggressive treatment by landlords."

Bedbugs don't carry diseases but they do leave nasty bite marks on people that are allergic to the numbing agent in their saliva. If you are not allergic, you may be getting bit and don't even know it. For example, this SFBG writer reported last year that it took a while to figure out what was going on when his girlfriend was getting bit every night but he was not.

So, what do we do about it? First, figure out if you have them. Bed bugs only come out for short periods of time and are good at hiding. If you find dark spots (blood or feces), shed skins, eggs, and dead bugs on your mattress, box spring, or linens, you probably have bed bugs. It is recommended that you actually find a bed bug before you start freaking out at your landlord.

Click here to read the entire article

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