On Bed Bugs

By Luisa Dexheimer, Resource Center Volunteer/ Intern

We recently organized and hosted a workshop to address the growing problem of bed bugs in the community. Our goal was to educate and inform and we did so by bringing in a leading expert in bed bugs, Dr. Jung Kim. Dr. Kim is an entomologist, environmental senior specialist, and medical entomologist and works with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDACS). He generously offered these words of advice.

I visited Charlotte, NC to work with the Latin American Coalition in November. I gave a presentation on bed bugs, of course. The presentation lasted about two hours including questions and answers. We discussed how to recognize and prevent bed bugs in Charlotte. Tenants should be aware of bed bugs and their signs of infestation. Both landlords and tenants need to be educated on bed bug issue.

Things that everybody should know about bed bugs:

Bed bugs are feed on blood, exclusively.

They are not known to be a vector, so it is not likely they would transfer human disease.

Bed bugs are small, but large enough for us to see; therefore, you can detect them easily with your naked eyes. You just need to know where to look.

Bed bugs can travel 5 – 20 ft when they are hungry. Consequently, they can move to a next door.

Bed bugs are resistant to some pesticides.

Bed bugs live about 3 – 6 months without blood feeding.

Remember that all the basic information about bed bugs is extremely important, because bed bugs are certainly challenging pest to control and manage for anybody.

Learn bed bug morphology, biology and behavior. Learn their insecticide resistance.

— Dr. Jung Kim

For more information on bed bugs, visit ncbedbugs.com.

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