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The Best Bed Bug Spray Options of 2022 – Top Picks by Bob Vila – Bob Vila


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on March 31st, 2022

Bed bugs (cimex lectularius) are tiny insects that feed on human blood, hiding in blankets, sheets, mattresses, and more. Bed bugs can also migrate to infest all areas of the house where you and your family hang out, leaving itchy, swollen bumps at the site of a bite.

The best bed bug spray typically uses active ingredients ranging from powerful insecticides like pyrethrin, pyrethroid, imidacloprid, and acetamiprid to pet- and child-friendly geranium oil and clove oil. If you want to rid your home of bed bugs of all life stages, read on for shopping tips and the most effective bed bug sprays available in their respective categories.

Bed bug spray can control and even eradicate infestations, but they can come with harmful levels of toxicitynot to mention strong chemical odorsthat require vacating the area until the spray clears.

Sprays are generally water- or oil-based formulas, the former of which could possibly damage electronics, documents, and wooden surfaces if used in excess. Oil-based sprays can stain whatever theyre applied to, and often leave a sticky residue, though thats typically removable with soap and water.

To avoid these issues with sprays, some folks plagued by bed bugs try alternative measures. These include steam cleaning and washing items in hot water, as exposure to temperatures of 185 degrees Fahrenheit kills bed bugs.

Diatomaceous eartha silica-rich powder made from the sediment of fossilized algaecan be employed to banish bed bugs by destroying their exoskeleton. There are also traps designed to lure and eliminate bed bugs. You may wish to consider the preventive measures and treatments below before reaching for a bed bug spray.

If the DIY treatments and the sprays described here fail to kill the bed bugs, then you may need to hire a professional exterminator to deal with the infestation.

Dont just grab the best-looking bed bug spray available. A flashy logo on packaging might draw attention, but the ingredients inside, application method, and longevity matter most when choosing a bed bug spray. You should also consider whether the bed bug sprays work on contact to immediately kill bed bugs or if its a residual treatment that kills slowly to increase poison transmission to other adult bed bugs and bed bug eggs.

Bed bug sprays are generally split into two types: Contact bed bug spray and residual bed bug spray.

Its necessary to determine the ingredients of a bed bug spray so that you know what the potential dangers are to you and your family, as well as the effects of the spray on the bed bugs. Common bed bug spray ingredients include pyrethrins and pyrethroids, desiccants, cold pressed neem oil, chlorfenapyr, neonicotinoids, and insect growth regulators.

Typically, bed bug spray is relatively easy to use. The most important step is to carefully read the instructions from the manufacturer before you start spraying to ensure it is safe to use on bedding, as well as any other precautions and recommendations.

Typically, you simply spray the product in common locations where the bed bugs travel, like cracks and crevices, then leave it for a few hours to several weeks, depending on the longevity of the spray. If you have a mild bed bug treatment that is safe for use on pillows, bed sheets, and mattresses, then apply the spray to the bed, allowing several hours for the bed bug spray to work.

Keep in mind that bed bugs can also hide in cracks and crevices in the headboard, footboard, rails, support slats, box spring, and any drawers that your bed may have. Additionally, bed bugs are likely to flee a toxic environment, so make sure you have enough spray to treat the entire room. If you are concerned about bed bugs in the walls, floor, or ceiling, consider using a bed bug fogger to ensure the chemical treatment seeps into all the narrow gaps, nooks, and crannies in the room.

After application, the bed bug spray will begin to work. When a bed bug comes in contact with the spray it is either immediately affected by contact killers or it may spread the treatment to other bed bugs if it was a residual killer. The longevity of a bed bug spray is not an indication of how long it will take to kill, but how long it remains active after application.

On average, a bed bug spray will remain effective for about 2 weeks after application, as long as it is not washed, rinsed, or otherwise disturbed. Some bed bug sprays can even last for up to 16 weeks, ensuring that the treated areas continue to control the bed bug population for up to 4 months. Always check the longevity of a product before investing in an easy bed bug spray.

We selected some of the best bed bug sprays in their respective categories based on high customer approval, overall efficacy, availability, and popularity.

Photo: amazon.com

The HARRIS bed bug spray is a powerful spray designed to be used on cracks, crevices, furniture, closets, wall moldings, mattress seams, bed frames, and almost anywhere else a bed bug could hide, without leaving behind stains and odors or damaging fabrics.

The chemical spray kills bed bugs on contact with imidacloprid, n-Octyl bicycloheptene dicarboximide, and phenothrin. It continues to treat the infestation for up to 16 weeks, even eliminating bugs and eggs that are resistant to traditional pyrethroid insecticides. While this product is EPA approved for use in your home and around pets, it should not be used on your clothing, pillows, or bedding. Always follow label directions to ensure safe use.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the HARRIS bed bug spray at Amazon, Walmart, and The Home Depot.

Photo: amazon.com

While other sprays can damage a mattress bedding and other fabrics, Bedlam Plus Bed Bug Aerosol Spray, with its water-based formula, can be used on all fabrics, wood furniture, and carpets to kill bed bugs and their eggs. This dual-action chemical treatment that includes imidacloprid can kill pyrethroid-resistant infestations, destroying bugs on initial contact and remaining active for up to 2 weeks.

Its safe to spray on every part of the bed, behind wall fixtures and on the carpet or hardwood floor without concern. The spray is non-irritating to humans and common pets, but should never be used in a food preparation area or around consumable food and beverages, as its unsafe to ingest the spray.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the Bedlam Plus bed bug spray on Amazon and at Walmart.

Photo: amazon.com

Hot Shot Bed Bug Killer is an affordable bed bug spray that treats infestations in every part of the bed, upholstered furniture, luggage, baseboards, and carpets. The water-based imiprothrin and lambda-cyhalothrin formula kills bed bugs, bed bug eggs, and fleas on contact, but needs to be reapplied every 2 weeks if infestations persist in problem areas.

The spray leaves no oily residue or stains behind and theres no noxious chemical odor. However, because the spray also kills fleas, the manufacturer specifically states that the spray must not be used on pets due to its harmful toxins. If the dog or cat comes down with fleas, see the veterinarian for an approved product to treat them.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the Hot Shot bed bug spray on Amazon and at Walmart.

Photo: amazon.com

MDXconcepts Natural Organic Bed Bug Killer is safe for the environment and all members of your household. The bed bug spray uses a natural, 100 percent plant-derived formula to instantly kill bed bugs on contact. The active ingredients, peppermint oil and spearmint oil, effectively treat bed bug infestations, imparting a fresh, pleasant scent.

This bed bug spray can be used on all moisture-safe surfaces and items, including mattresses, baseboards, and carpets, without staining or leaving an oily residue. Repeat treatment per the manufacturers directions until the infestation is eliminated.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the MDXconcepts bed bug spray at Walmart.

Photo: amazon.com

If more than one insect species has invaded a space, JT Eaton Oil-Based Bed Bug Spray is a broad-spectrum solution that targets multiple pests, including bed bugs and their eggs, fleas, brown dog ticks, silverfish, spiders, carpet beetles, and some roaches.

It relies on a pyrethrin and piperonyl butoxide formula and can be sprayed on all bed parts, baseboards, and flooring to kill on contact. It may leave an oily residue if too much is used, and its harmful to both humans and pets, so be sure to follow manufacturer directions exactly to ensure your safety.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the JT Eaton bed bug spray on Amazon and at Walmart.

Photo: amazon.com

This efficient bed bug spray uses three different active ingredientsdinotefuran, pyriproxyfen, and pralethrinto quickly and effectively treat all stages of bed bug infestations and can be effective on pyrethroid-resistant bed bugs. Despite its impressive results, PT Alpine Flea and Bed Bug Killer is rated for use on all areas of your bed, including your mattress, pillows, and other bed coverings.

Its specially formulated to avoid drenching fabrics and it dries quickly so that you wont need to air out the house for too longbut it does have a chemical smell characteristic of powerful insecticides. Use a respirator mask during application and follow manufacturer recommendations for reentry.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the PT Alpine bed bug spray on Amazon and at Walmart.

Photo: amazon.com

Bed bugs in upholstery can be tricky to treat because they hide in the folds and stitches of furniture. Fortunately, Ortho Home Defense Max Bed Bug Killer outsmarts the insects with a unique battery-powered application wand. It delivers multiple spray patterns for precise application and a finger trigger for continuous spraying.

This odorless bed bug spray, which relies on bifenthrin, imidacloprid, and piperonyl butoxide, can be used once every 2 weeks on bed frames, couches, chairs, and baseboards to kill pyrethroid-resistant bed bugs, bed bug eggs, fleas, and ticks. It should not be used on mattress bedding, clothing, or pillows, however, and the manufacturers treatment instructions must be followed for best results and to ensure safety.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the Ortho bed bug spray at Amazon, Walmart, and The Home Depot.

Photo: amazon.com

HARRIS 5-Minute Bed Bug Foaming Spray is best for use in baseboards, cracks, crevices, bed frames, box springs, and wall moldings thanks to a unique formula that expands into these areas, eliminating hidden nests within 5 minutes of contact. The spray continues working for a month before needing to be reapplied if bed bugs persist.

This spray relies on metofluthrin, clothianidin, and piperonyl butoxide to kill pyrethroid-resistant bed bugs in all stages of life. The foaming spray is non-staining and odorless, allowing it to be used all over the home without concern for residual stains, and it turns clear when it dries. While the EPA has approved the product for use on the entire mattress, the manufacturer recommends bed linens not be treated with this product.

Product Specs

Pros

Cons

Get the HARRIS bed bug foaming spray on Amazon and at Walmart.

For long-lasting bed bug control, HARRIS bed bug spray reliably treats bed bug populations for up to 16 weeks. However, if you are concerned about the treatment irritating or affecting you, your family, and any pets, then its better to opt for the more mild treatment of MGK Bedlam Plus bed bug spray.

One problem currently affecting the bed bug extermination industry is that many populations of bed bugs have become resistant to pyrethrins and pyrethroids. So, during the selection of products, it was necessary to keep this in mind and look for top-quality options that could deal with pyrethroid-resistant infestations.

Extensive research into the ingredients, longevity, application, and effect of each bed bug spray was necessary in order to determine the top options for this list. The best bed bug sprays treat infestations while causing minimal disruption to the daily life of users and their family. Additionally, both natural and chemical bed bug sprays were selected to provide a range of treatment options.

Take a look at the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about bed bugs, bed bug treatments, and how to deal with bed bug infestations.

There are many reasons bed bugs might find their way into your home, but the most common cause of bed bugs is travel. The insects get into your luggage and clothing from hotel or motel beds, allowing them to infest your home if they are not killed immediately, which is why its a good idea to spray your luggage outdoors as soon as you get home, and then wash all contents of the bag.

Yes, you can sleep on a bed that is infested with bed bugs, but expect to wake up to itchy, red bite marks. You wont even feel the bed bug bite or them feeding for up to 10 minutes due to a numbing agent in the bite of the insect, but the evidence will be there in the morning.

Professional exterminators can use a range of options to kill bed bugs, like heat treatment, foggers, powders, and sprays. Common professional bed bug sprays will contain pyrethroids, pyrethrins, imidacloprid, piperonyl butoxide, bifenthrin, or lambda-cyhalothrin.

If you suspect that bed bugs may be hiding, then you can use a hair dryer to increase the heat over the suspected area to force the bed bugs to come out of hiding. Hold the dryer about 3 to 4 inches away and move it back and forth across the area for about 30 seconds to a minute.

The best way to permanently get rid of bed bugs is thorough repetition and diligence. Wash and dry clothes, bedding, and other linens at temperatures of at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit to kill bed bugs in the laundry. Vacuum regularly to suck up bed bugs from the carpet and make sure to immediately seal and throw out the vacuum bag.

If you have items that cannot be heated up enough to kill the bed bugs, consider freezing these items for at least 4 days straight to ensure they are bed bug-free. You will also need to regularly inspect the home and treat with a bed bug spray as necessary.

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The Best Bed Bug Spray Options of 2022 - Top Picks by Bob Vila - Bob Vila

Fungus foils invading hordes of crazy ants, and thats great for Texas – Ars Technica


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on March 31st, 2022

Enlarge / Tawny crazy ants (Nylanderia fulva) feeding on a cricket.

Lawrence E. Gilbert

Several years ago, staffers at Estero Llano Grande State Park in Weslaco, Texas, noticed a new type of invasive ant species. Tawny crazy ants were so aggressive that they were driving birds out of their nests and occasionally swarming over visitors who paused to sit on a trail. Populations of other native specieslike scorpions, snakes, tarantulas, and lizardssharply declined, while rabbits were blinded by the ants' venom.

That's when University of Texas at Austin biologist Ed LeBrun got involved. The park "had a crazy ant infestation, and it was apocalypticrivers of ants going up and down every tree," he said. Crazy ants have since spread rapidly through every state on the Gulf Coast, with over 27 Texas counties reporting significant infestations. The usual ant-bait traps and over-the-counter pesticides have proven ineffective, so the EPA has approved the temporary (but restricted) use of an anti-termite agent called fipronil. But a more targeted and less toxic control strategy would be better.

LeBrun has worked extensively on fire ants, another invasive species that has plagued the region. He has spent the last few years investigating potential sustainable control strategies based on crazy ants' natural enemies in the wild. LeBrun and his colleagues have now discovered that a specific type of fungus can effectively wipe out crazy ant colonies while leaving other native species alone, according to a new paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Alex Wild/U-Texas, Austin

Originally hailing from South America, tawny crazy ants (Nylanderia fulva) get their name because of their unpredictable movements. (They are also sometimes known as Rasberry crazy ants after exterminator Tom Rasberry.) The ants are unusual because they don't build central mounds or nests. Instead, colonies make their homes under stones, in rotting logs, or in any kind of pre-existing hole in the ground. Crazy ant colonies also have multiple queens, which contributes to their hardiness.

For some reason, crazy ants are attracted to electrical equipment. They can even chew through insulation and wiring and short out electrical equipment. A swarm of crazy ants can asphyxiate a chicken, and swarms have been known to attack larger animals, like cattle, around the eyes, nostrils, and hooves. Some homeowners in the Lone Star State were sweeping up dustpans full of dead crazy ants on a daily basis at the height of infestation.

Crazy ants don't have the painful bite of fire ants, but they do excrete formic acid they can use as a venomhence the blinded rabbits in Estero Llano Grande State Park. In 2014, scientists discovered that crazy ants could survive exposure to fire ant venom 98 percent of the time by using their own formic acid to detoxify the venom. When their gland ducts were blocked, crazy ants had only a 48 percent survival rate.

Thomas Swafford/U-Texas, Austin

A useful clue for fighting off this invasive species came from other research LeBrun had conducted with Rob Plowes of Brackenridge Field Laboratory on a population of crazy ants collected in Florida. Several of the ants had swollen abdomens. LeBrun and Plowes found that those bodies contained spores of a parasite from the fungal microsporidian group. The researchers had seen similar symptoms in fire ants infected with other kinds of microsporidia, which hijack an ant's fat cells to produce even more spores. But the type of microsporidium affecting the crazy ants was an entirely new genus, suggesting it might infect crazy ants but leave other species alone.

This was the first dent in the crazy ants' armor LeBrun had been able to find. Since then, he and his co-authors have been diligently studying this new type of microsporidiadubbed M. nylanderiaeto learn more about how it infects and spreads throughout an ant colony. The researchers focused on 15 particular crazy ant colonies in Texas and monitored the colonies over eight years for signs of infection.

The scientists found that every infected crazy ant population declined substantially, usually over the winter, and 62 percent of the populations were wiped out entirely. That's unusual, per LeBrun, since there is usually a "boom and bust cycle" associated with the spread of pathogens. The authors suggest that the collapses occurred in part because of the shortened life spans of worker ants, making it harder for the colonies to gather enough resources to survive winters.

Edward LeBrun/U-Texas, Austin

Next, LeBrun et al. collected infected crazy ants from other regions and placed them in nest boxes near two other uninfected sites. The researchers used hot dogs as bait around the exits to get the two populations to merge. The result: Infection levels rose exponentially at both those sites.

Today, Estero Llano Grande State Park is refreshingly free of crazy ant infestations, and native species have started to return to the area. A crazy ant infestation was also eradicated at a second site, according to LeBrun, and he and his team plan to expand their new biocontrol method to other Texas habitats plagued by crazy ant infections this spring.

"I think it has a lot of potential for the protection of sensitive habitats with endangered species or areas of high conservation value," LeBrun said. "This doesn't mean crazy ants will disappear. It's impossible to predict how long it will take for the lightning bolt to strike and the pathogen to infect any one crazy ant population. But it's a big relief because it means these populations appear to have a life span."

DOI: PNAS, 2022. 10.1073/pnas.2114558119 (About DOIs).

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Fungus foils invading hordes of crazy ants, and thats great for Texas - Ars Technica

If You Smell This in Your Bedroom, You Might Have Bed Bugs …


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on January 27th, 2022

From funky odors in the fridge to questionable scents coming from the basement, our sense of smell can warn us of potential danger. However, sometimes things we should be alerted to don't smell all that bad, which could make detecting them tricky. This can be the case with bed bugs. While the creepy crawlers do have a handful of specific scents, they're not always unpleasant, so the scent can easily be overlooked. To see what smell you should be looking out for, read on, and for more signs of infestation, If You See This in Your Yard, Prepare for a Bug Invasion, USDA Says.

The smell that bed bugs give off varies depending on your personal olfactory sense and can also change depending on the state of the bug. Pest company Orkin says bed bugs can give off a "musty, sweet smell, often likened to berries," if there's a sizable infestation.

Professional pest control specialist and entomologist Nicholas Martinsaid this smell usually only arises if "many of them are squashed or disturbed. You're not likely to detect the smell from a few squashed bugs, so this usually occurs if the infestation is severe." And for more on these dreaded critters, These Awful Bugs You Forgot About May Soon Come Back, Exterminators Warn.

Bed bugs release pheromones when they feel they're in peril to alert other bugs to danger, Martin says. "The smell can be quite similar to coriander or a pile of clothes that was closed in the washing machine for a couple of days or a pair of moldy shoes," he notes. According to pest control expert Jordan Foster, at low concentrations some people find this smell to be pleasant. However, if a large group of bed bugs gets disturbed, you may get a whiff of an odor similar to a stink bug's, he adds. And for more odors that should have you calling an exterminator, If Your House Smells Like This, You May Have a Bug Problem.

Before calling an exterminator, you may want to check for other signs of the critters. Foster said if you see "dark blood stains on sheets and bedding" or have "itchy, irritated skin" seemingly from bites, it's time to contact a professional. The bed bug's pheromone scent "is an effective way for the pests to communicate and remain hidden," Foster says. "Because of their elusiveness, it is best to contact a professional pest control company rather than trying to tackle the problem by yourself."

Unfortunately, these bugs may not be confined solely to your bed. Martin says you should inspect all other furniture, including couches, chairs, and any cracks in the room. "Bed bugs can hide anywhere they feel safe," he says. "However, the most common location is your bed, as it's the best place to feed." And for more useful information delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Besides causing restless nights, these pests nibble on your skin when you fall asleep. "During the evening, bed bugs use an anesthetic in their saliva to bite people without being detected," Foster explains. Their bites cause discomfort and itching, but are not believed to be a risk for diseases. "They are, however, extremely difficult to control." And for more breaking bug news, If You Live Here, Prepare for a Major Bug Infestation, Expert Warns.

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If You Smell This in Your Bedroom, You Might Have Bed Bugs ...

Bed Bugs – Truly Green Pest Control


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on January 27th, 2022

Bed bugs are small, oval, brownish insects that live on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bedbugs have flat bodies about the size of an apple seed. After feeding, however, their bodies swell and are a reddish color.

Bedbugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, and ceilings. Female bedbugs may lay hundreds of eggs, each of which is about the size of a speck of dust, over a lifetime.

Immature bedbugs, called nymphs, shed their skins five times before reaching maturity and require a meal of blood before each shedding. Under favorable conditions the bugs can develop fully in as little as a month and produce three or more generations per year. Although they are a nuisance, they are not thought to transmit diseases.

Related Articles: Can Bed Bugs Live In Cold

Where Bed Bugs Hide

Bedbugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, used beds and couches, and other items. Their flattened bodies make it possible for them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees but tend to live in groups in hiding places. Their initial hiding places are typically in mattresses, box springs, bed frames, and headboards where they have easy access to people to bite in the night.

Over time, however, they may scatter through the bedroom, moving into any crevice or protected location. They may also spread to nearby rooms or apartments.

Because bedbugs live solely on blood, having them in your home is not a sign of dirtiness. You are as likely to find them in immaculate homes and hotel rooms as in filthy ones.

When Bed bugs Bite

Bedbugs are active mainly at night and usually bite people while they are sleeping. They feed by piercing the skin and withdrawing blood through an elongated beak. The bugs feed from three to 10 minutes to become engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.

Most bedbug bites are painless at first, but later turn into itchy welts. Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bedbug bites are on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. Also, the bites do not have a red spot in the center like flea bites do. People who dont realize they have a bedbug infestation may attribute the itching and welts to other causes, such as mosquitoes. To confirm bedbug bites, you must find and identify the bugs themselves.

Signs of Infestation

If you wake up with itchy areas you didnt have when you went to sleep, you may have bedbugs, particularly if you got a used bed or other used furniture around the time the bites started. Other signs that you have bedbugs include:

If you suspect an infestation, remove all bedding and check it carefully for signs of the bugs or their excrement. Remove the dust cover over the bottom of the box springs and examine the seams in the wood framing. Peel back the fabric where it is stapled to the wood frame.

Getting rid of bedbugs begins with cleaning up the places where bedbugs live. This should include the following:

If your mattress is infested, you may want to get rid of it and get a new one but take care to rid the rest of your home of bedbugs or they will infest your new mattress.

While cleaning up infested areas will be helpful in controlling bedbugs, getting rid of them usually requires chemical treatments. Because treating your bed and bedroom with insecticides can be harmful, it is important to use products that can be used safely in bedrooms. Do not treat mattresses and bedding unless the label specifically says you can use them on bedding.

Generally, it is safest and most effective to hire an experienced pest control professional for bedbug extermination.

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Bed Bugs - Truly Green Pest Control

How to get rid of bed bugs and how to tell if you have them – Tom’s Guide


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on January 27th, 2022

Googling how to get rid of bed bugs can mean one of two things; either you have bed bugs and need to do something about it, or youre not sure if you have them and want to take precautions. Whichever the case, dont worry: We'll take you through everything you need to know about bed bugs, from where they come from to how to tell if you have them, to how to get rid of them. Because knowing how to clean a mattress just isnt enough.

Bed bugs arent something you should be embarrassed about its actually still a very common problem. The good news is you can deal with it yourself. These methods take time and commitment, but they work and will get rid of these uninvited guests. Heres a step-by-step guide on getting rid of bed bugs.

Bed bugs or cimex lectularius are tiny insects, about 5 mm in length, which feed on the blood of humans and animals. Theyre flat with an oval-shaped body and appear a reddish-brown color. Because of their size, theyre difficult to see unless in large groups, and they like to hide in concealed spaces although theyre most commonly found around the bed.

Bed bugs use the blood to grow and reproduce, and with females laying up to 250 eggs in a lifetime, a small problem can quickly turn into an infestation. These parasites do not transmit disease, but they are a health concern and so need to be dealt with swiftly.

Its actually a myth that bed bugs are drawn to dirty environments aside from more hiding places, this wont make a difference to these bugs. What theyre actually attracted to is blood, warmth and carbon dioxide. This means most bedrooms would be a suitable environment for these pests even the best mattress isnt immune. Once theyve found a suitable food source, bed bugs will essentially hide near the area and wait for the next meal opportunity.

If youre wondering how the bed bugs were introduced into your home, there are many possibilities. You may have brought them in on second-hand items such as furniture, or you could pick them up from places youve stayed which are infested, such as hotel rooms. Guests can also carry them in unknowingly. Pets are unlikely to bring them in though, as they do not live on the animals.

If you suspect bed bugs, you should investigate immediately the earlier you catch it, the better. If left untreated, bed bugs can quickly multiply into an infestation which is much more complex and costly to deal with.

The first sign of bed bugs, which most will be aware of, are bites. Once these parasites have finished feeding, they can leave behind a small mark on your skin, or even a rash. However, these bites cant be distinguished from other common insect bites, and some people may not react at all. For this reason, you shouldnt assume you have bed bugs based on bites alone.

You should look for physical evidence of bed bugs, which can include any of the following:

Both chemical and non-chemical treatments are available to get rid of bed bugs. We will take you through what you can do yourself before hiring a professional exterminator.

1. First, check around your home to determine the extent of the problem. Are the bed bugs contained in your bedroom, or is there evidence under the couch cushions? Popular areas to check include:

2. Now you know where the bed bugs are, you need to stop them from spreading any further. Clear out any immediate garbage from the room by sealing it in a plastic bag before throwing it away. If you want to move items out of the room, be aware that you should seal it first as it could be infested.

3. Next, vacuum up any immediate bed bugs using one of the best vacuum cleaners. Vacuum both sides of your mattress as well as inside your closet, dresser and anywhere else you believe to be infested. Dont forget the carpet too!

3. Once youve done that, empty and seal the vacuum canister's contents into a plastic bag and throw it away in an outdoor trash can. Keep in mind that vacuuming wont exterminate the bed bugs, but it will keep the numbers down.

4. Now, you want to wash and launder all infested linens on the hottest cycle allowed in your washer and dryer. This includes bed sheets, clothes, soft toys and upholstery. If the item isnt suitable for machine washing, you can also use steam, which is just as effective.

Now that youve reduced the numbers, its time to kill any unhatched and remaining bed bugs. There are a couple of methods you can try before resorting to chemicals. Not all will work depending on your circumstances, but each are worth considering.

1. Heat High temperatures will kill bed bugs, so if you can contain the infested contents, you can run them through the washer and dryer on a high heat setting. You could also use a portable heat chamber for larger items, such as the ZappBug Room Bed Bug Heater ($1,495, Amazon). Professionals can also treat homes with heat if the problem is more severe.

2. Cold Cold temperatures will also kill bed bugs. Once again, you need to contain the infested items in a sealed bag and, this time, use your freezer to kill them. Your freezer would need to be set to 0F and the bag would need to sit for a minimum of four days for it to be effective, so this isnt the most convenient method.

3. Steam As mentioned earlier, steam is a very effective method of killing bed bugs. Steam can penetrate deep into crevices and carpet, meaning its got good reach. However, the temperature needs to be at least 130F and you dont want the air flow to be too powerful or it can blow bed bugs away. Steamers can be used on many surfaces including mattresses, couches and carpets, but be careful around electrical elements, such as sockets. If you dont own a steamer, we recommend the Dupray Neat Steam Cleaner ($149.78, Amazon)

4. Mattress cover You can bed bug-proof your mattress and boxspring with a cover, such as the SureGuard Mattress Encasement ($54.97, Amazon). Bed bugs that are locked in will eventually die and external bugs wont be able to infest your mattress while the cover is on.

5. Bed Bug Traps You can also buy dedicated traps to catch stray bed bugs, such as Harris Bed Bug Traps ($4.93, Amazon). Traps which sit under furniture legs are also popular, such as Lights Out BedBug Pitfall Trap ($24.40, Amazon).

There are also plenty of pesticides available which you can buy and apply yourself if you feel comfortable. If you choose to do this, make sure you follow the instructions exactly. There are different chemical classes, however pyrethrins and pyrethroids are some of the most commonly used compounds. Desiccants are quite effective as well as they dry out the insects, which will eventually kill them.

Harris Bed Bug Killer ($20.35, Amazon) is a widely used liquid spray, but if youve got children or pets around, then EcoRaider Bed Bug Killer ($18.55, Amazon) may be the better option.

You can also resort to bug bombs or foggers, however these are highly toxic to humans and animals and should be handled with extreme care. You would have to vacate your home during the process. Plus, theres no guarantee that this would kill every bed bug as it wont penetrate cracks and crevices.

If youre not comfortable applying these methods yourself, you can always call in a professional to handle the chemicals.

Bear in mind that bed bugs can take months to eradicate, so you will have to be both patient and persistent. Check the environment every few days to look out for more evidence of bed bugs. Its very difficult to catch every bug in one application, plus a fresh batch can hatch from the residual eggs, so re-apply your method and continue to check to see if any remain.

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How to get rid of bed bugs and how to tell if you have them - Tom's Guide

Philadelphia jumps to second place on Orkin’s 2022 list of cities most infested with bed bugs – PhillyVoice.com


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on January 14th, 2022

Philadelphia residents may want to double check and make sure that no bed bugs have moved into their homes.

The city had the second-most bed bug infestations among 50 others in the U.S. over the past year, trailing only Chicago for the top spot in the nation, according to Orkin. Philly made the biggest year-over-year jump, moving up 12 spots from No. 14 to No. 2 on the pest control company's 2022 list.

The annual "Top 50 Bed Bug Cities List" is based upon data from metro areas nationwide where the company performed the most treatments from December 2020 through November 2021. The data includes both residential and commercial treatments.

Harrisburg also experienced a surge in bed bug infestations over the past year, as Pennsylvania's state capital was a newcomer to this year's list at No. 42.

Below are the top 10 U.S. cities with the most infestations over the past year.

Bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed, measuring around a quarter-inch in length. The reddish-brown insects are predominantly nocturnal and take blood from sleeping humans, which is their only food source.

They can reproduce quickly, with females laying as many as five eggs per day and up to 500 in their lifetime. They are able to survive for up to a year without eating and typically emerge from their hiding spots when a food source becomes available.

Homeowners and renters are encouraged to regularly inspect their homes during the day. Bed bugs typically gather in mattress tags, seams and box springs, as well as behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets, wallpapers and picture frames.

Experts advise decreasing clutter around one's home to make it easier to spot them. Inspections should be conducted anytime guests stay overnight or when previously-used furniture is brought into the home.

Given how easily bed bugs can travel by latching onto luggage and purses, thorough inspections should be conducted during and after a trip.

Travelers should always check their hotel room for signs of an infestation. Tiny, ink-colored stains on mattresses, in furniture and behind headboards are indications that bed bugs may be present.

All luggage should be kept away from beds and walls and placed in the bathroom or atop counters. Suitcases should be inspected carefully when repacking and returning home. Any clothing that can be dried should go in the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting upon returning home.

Bed bugs are difficult to remove once they are discovered and infestations can spread quickly. Anyone who finds the tiny insects in their homes should immediately wash all bedding and clothing at high temperatures to kill any bugs and eggs.

Putting sealed cases around mattresses, box springs and pillows will trap any bed bugs and prevent future infestations. Carpets should be vacuumed as well.

Pesticides may also be used to kill any bed bugs that are hiding, but all products should be reviewed before being used in a home. A professional exterminator should be called if a bed bug infestation continues to spread.

"Bed bugs are a concern for everyone because they are master hitchhikers, traveling home with people when they likely don't realize it," said Ben Hottel, an Orkin entomologist. "Their nature of hiding in difficult-to-find cracks and crevices can make them hard to control, which is why involving a trained professional at the sight of an introduction is recommended."

Orkin has also ranked Philadelphia as one of the seven-worst cities for rat infestations for the past two years.

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Philadelphia jumps to second place on Orkin's 2022 list of cities most infested with bed bugs - PhillyVoice.com

Archibald Snatcher | Villains Wiki | Fandom


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on January 14th, 2022

This Villain was proposed and approved by Villains Wiki's Pure Evil Proposals Thread. Any act of removing this villain from the category without a Removal Proposal shall be considered vandalism (or a futile "heroic" attempt of redemption) and the user will have high chances of being terminated blocked. You cannot make said Removal Proposal without permission from an admin first. Additional Notice: This template is meant for admin maintenance only. Users who misuse the template will be blocked for a week minimum.

Evil-doer

Archibald Penelope Snatcher

Mr. SnatcherLord SnatcherSnatcher

Leader of the Red Hats

High intelligenceManipulationAdept fighting skills

Capturing Boxtrolls.

Kill the Boxtrolls. (both failed)Usurp Lord Portley-Rind from his position as the mayor of Cheesebridge. (briefly succeeded)Eat high quality cheese. (succeeded, but then backfired)

Genocidal Elitist

Archibald Penelope Snatcher, also known by his female persona Madame Frou Frou, is the main antagonist of Laika's third full-length animated feature film The Boxtrolls. He is an exterminator and the leader of the Red Hats, secretly planning to become one of the White Hats. He is the archenemy of Eggs.

He was voiced by Sir Ben Kingsley, who also played Dr. Xavier Fitch in Species, Don Logan in Sexy Beast, The Hood in the Thunderbirds film, Fagin in the 2005 Oliver Twist film adaptation, The Rabbi in Lucky Number Slevin, Nizam in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Trevor Slattery in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and General Woundwort in the 2018 Netflix Watership Down adaptation. While singing and under his Madame Frou Frou identity, he was voiced by Sean Patrick Doyle.

Archibald Snatcher was raised in the town of Cheesebridge, he was enemies with Lord Portley-Rind because he was never accepted to be a member of the White Hats. He then became an exterminator, trying to hunt the Boxtrolls that lived under the town.

Snatcher used to friends with Herbert Trubshaw, an inventor, until one day, he told him his plan to kill The Box Trolls and ask him to build an automaton to achieve it. Herbert, knowing the Boxtrolls were innocent, refused. This led to Snatcher threatening to kidnap his son. During the struggle, Herbert gave his son to the Boxtrolls. Snatcher then knocked him down and imprison him.

Snatcher later tells Lord Portley-Rind that the Boxtrolls have taken a human baby and vows that he will "protect" Cheesebridge by destroying them in exchange for a White Hat. As the days pass, he warns the villagers of the Boxtrolls, setting a curfew on the town and trapping every troll that he comes across with the aid of his henchmen, Mr. Gristle, Mr. Trout, and Mr. Pickles.

Ten years later, Portley-Rind's precocious daughter named Winnie notices the trolls and sneaks out of the house. That is when she comes across the film's hero Eggs. Unfortunately, Eggs runs off and Snatcher discovers Winnie and escorts her home. Afterwards, Snatcher and his thugs capture the Boxtrolls including Eggs' adoptive father, Fish.

Determined to save Fish, Eggs disguises himself as a man and sneaks into the village, where he comes across a fairground where Snatcher disguises himself as a performer named Madame Frou Frou and sings the story of the Trubshaw baby's "kidnapping and murder" by the Boxtrolls. After another meeting with Winnie, Eggs slips into Snatcher's hideout, a factory.

Snatcher tests a piece of cheese by devouring it and his allergic reaction begins, causing his face and hand to swell and begins to hallucinate. Mr. Gristle tosses a bucket of leeches onto his boss, curing him. As Snatcher's henchmen tend to him, Eggs manages to free Fish. The Red Hats discover Eggs and try to shoot him down, but Winnie interferes and Snatcher takes her captive. Eggs swings down on a rope and saves the girl. Both of them run out of the factory and out of the reach of Mr. Gristle.

When Winnie asks Eggs where he came from, Fish tells her that his father, Herbert Trubshaw, was once a famous inventor who cared for the Boxtrolls. When he was a baby, Snatcher ordered the boy's father to build something to help him with his plan. Trubshaw refused and he tried to take the infant from him. The inventor gave baby Eggs to the Boxtrolls for safekeeping and Snatcher supposedly killed Trubshaw by striking him with a wrench.

Eggs and Winnie go to a ball hosted by Portley-Rind. In his Madame Frou Frou costume, Snatcher nabs him and prepares to throttle Eggs until Frou Frou is called to the dance floor, giving Eggs time to escape. As Winnie teaches Eggs to dance, Snatcher tries to grab him, with little luck. Portley-Rind reveals a giant cheese wheel known as the "Briehemoth" and when Eggs tries to convince him that Snatcher was lying, he accidentally knocks the giant cheese into the river. Portley-Rind tells Eggs to get out of his house after our hero tries to expose the exterminator as a fake.

Later, as Eggs (out of humiliation) tells the Boxtrolls that he is not one of them. Suddenly, Snatcher (manning a giant robot) breaks into their home and begins destroying it. As the Boxtrolls' first and only instinct is to hide, they do the sort and Eggs urges them to get up and fight as Snatcher's machine would kill them however to no avail. Eggs tries to get them to the surface but the machine destroys the way out, Snatcher begins stealing the Boxtrolls and Eggs manages to grab Fish. He has backed into a corner by Snatcher and his goons, he tries to plead but Snatcher mocks him as Boxtrolls lost ten years ago and as he orders Mr. Gristle to fire, Eggs is then tied up, catapulted to a rock wall and is knocked out on impact. Trout and Pickles untie Eggs then Gristle knocks out Fish who was trying to scare them off, they capture Eggs and the trolls and leave.

Inside the factory, Eggs is locked in a cage and notices a crazy man hanging from chains. He realizes that the prisoner is his long-lost father and Snatcher crushes the Boxtrolls in a giant machine before vowing to kill the last one.

The next day, Snatcher seizes power over Cheesebridge and tells Lord Portley-Rind that he has exterminated the Boxtrolls and is ready to off the last one. Eggs is bound, gagged and stuffed into a Boxtroll costume while the Red Hats dangle him above a furnace. Snatcher is about to place Portley-Rind's hat on his head when Winnie stands up to him and convinces Mr. Trout and Mr. Pickles to redeem themselves, which they do.

Unfortunately, Mr. Gristle grabs the controls and prepares to finish off Eggs when Trubshaw and the Boxtrolls, who have slipped out of their boxes before being crushed, attack Mr. Gristle, lower Eggs and untie him. Winnie then reveals the truth about the Boxtrolls being docile creatures and that Snatcher lied to everyone about Trubshaw being killed by the Boxtrolls when he is still alive. Trubshaw then reveals himself to everyone, making them realize that Snatcher has deceived them all those years. Despite his plot being exposed, Snatcher dons his machine in an attempt to get the White Hat to himself, causing havoc around the city.

Eggs, Winnie and the Boxtrolls make an attempt to bring down the machine while Winnie and some of the trolls distract Snatcher with the White Hat. In a fit of rage, Snatcher tries to finish off Eggs by striking him with his wrench, but Winnie, Trubshaw and the Boxtrolls (aided by Mr. Pickles and Mr. Trout) sabotage the robot and it falls down on Mr. Gristle, crushing him to his death. Eggs and Snatcher fall onto the Briehemoth, which has been fished from the river. This triggers Snatcher's cheese allergy and he grows into a monstrous and amorphous blob. He takes Winnie hostage and forces Portley-Rind to give him the White Hat.

Declaring that he has finally won, Snatcher enters the tasting room, where he forces Eggs, Fish and Portley-Rind to introduce a new brand of cheese that he wants to taste. Winnie manages to wriggle out of his grasp by biting him on the hand. Just as Snatcher is about to taste a small piece of the cheese, Eggs tries to convince him to let go of his lust for power, telling that getting everything he wants won't change who Archibald Snatcher is and that he has the power to make himself into what he wants to be. Snatcher is taken aback by Eggs's words and appears to consider them, but ultimately the fiendish exterminator refuses and eats the given sample. At first, Snatcher finds the taste of the cheese to be delicious, but then seconds later, his allergy to milk finally sets off and he immediately explodes to his death in a yellow slimy mess, though Eggs, Fish, Winnie and Portley-Rind survived the entire ordeal.

With Snatcher's plot finally exposed and foiled, the citizens of Cheesbridge agreed to live peacefully with the Boxtrolls, and Winnie tales the tale of Snatcher's death to the crowd, earning an outstanding ovation from both the Boxtrolls and citizens; even Portley-Rind happily compliments Winnie for a good performance.

Archibald Snatcher is a self-stylized, conniving and manipulative exterminator who is hell-bent on eradicating the Boxtrolls, a peaceful race of friendly monsters who have adopted an orphaned boy, Eggs. Leading a band of ragamuffins called the Red Hats, his grand scheme involves ridding the city of the trolls to seize power over the town. Snatcher dreams of being part of high society and fancies himself a connoisseur of fine cheeses, despite his allergy, eating cheese can cause him to swell up. Determined to get the respect he feels entitled to, he will do anything (no matter how ruthless he is) to get it, even if that means leaving destruction in his wake. He is shown as completely evil in nature as he will stop at nothing to get what he wants: the respect and power from everyone in Cheesebridge. That is the two only things that matter for him. Trying to exterminate a race of peaceful creatures and sacrificing children or anyone he considers a threat to his plans is no problem for him and he shows no remorse for his crimes. He takes even sadistic delight when Eggs discovers his father alive and driven crazy by spending 10 years hanging upside down. He is also extremely uncharitable and ruthless in nature, being willing to exterminate an entire group of Boxtrolls with a giant smashing machine and attempting to kill Eggs and Winnie, two young children, with his robot. He is also a very charismatic and persuasive actor, posing as an opera singer named Madame Frou Frou to tell everyone the story about the Boxtrolls being mindless monsters and dressing up Eggs as a Boxtroll to execute him in front of the citizens in order to gain a White Hat. Also, he is relatively polite in public and he has some comedic moments. However, his acts are not comedic in the slightest. His goal and acts seems to stem from the fact that his father always told him that if people work hard enough, it deserves a white hat, but said father found himself without anything before his death despite all his hard work. This makes Snatcher despising the White Hats for looking down at him and people like him and has spent his entire life plotting in the hope of reaching the top. But despite that, there is no extreme act he would not do to win his White Hat.

In spite of his intelligence, he is shown to totally disregard his allergy to cheese, since he actually loves the taste of it, which, of course, along with his lust for power, contributed to his demise.

He is also shown to be very arrogant, narcissistic and self-centered; the most obvious trait is Snatcher's desire for power, respect and entitlement, which shows how he would have killed the entire race of Boxtrolls and burning alive a disguised Eggs only to get Lord Portley-Rind's White Hat. Although it is not really obvious, Snatcher does not have a lot of respect for his employees, by calling them "Stooges" and he threateningly confronts Mr. Pickles after mentioning his allergy to cheese.

Animated FeaturesWarren T. Rat |Mott Street Maulers (Digit) |Moe |Cossack Cats |Sharptooth |Cat R. Waul |Cactus Cat Gang (T.R. Chula, One-Eye, & Sweet William) |Professor Screweyes |Ozzy & Strut |Hyp |Mutt and Nod |Steele |Ichy and Dil |Mr. Grasping |Toplofty and O'Bloat |Chief McBrusque |Scuttlebutt |Madame Mousey |Twitch |Rinkus and Sierra |Niju |Nuk, Yak, and Sumac |Farley the Fox |Br'er Fox |Br'er Wolf |Robert the Terrible |Serpent |Botticelli Remorso |1 |8 |Fabrication Machine |Machines (Cat Beast, Winged Beast, Seamstress, Steel Behemoths, Seeker Drones, & Spiderbots) |The Chancellor's Party (Chancellor Fredinand) |Danno Wolfe |Felonious Gru |Minions |Dr. Nefario |Vector |Mr. Perkins |Nightmare Train |Aloysius O'Hare |The Once-Ler |Morty and McGurk |The Once-ler's Mother |Brett and Chet |Aunt Grizelda |Agatha Prenderghast |Judge Hopkins |El Macho |El Pollito |Evil Minions |Norvirus Raccoon |Percy "King" Dimplewade |Knuckles |Archibald Snatcher |Mr. Gristle |Mr. Trout |Mr. Pickles |Scarlet Overkill |Herb Overkill |Villain Con Villains |Snowball |Flushed Pets |Ozone |Raiden the Moon King |Karasu and Washi |Giant Skeleton |Garden of Eyes |Bears |Mike |The Gorillas (Johnny's Father) |Zhong |Dru Gru |Balthazar Bratt |Clive |Mayor Muldoon |Heather Muldoon |Gunther |The Grinch |Grimmel the Grisly |Deathgrippers |Warlords |Lou |Lydia, Kitty, and Tuesday |Sergei |Little Sergei |Circus Wolves |Dr. Zara |Burnish |Goon Leader |Queen Barb |Rock Trolls |The K-Pop Gang |Reggaeton Trolls |Spiny Mandrilla |Punch Monkeys |Hendricks |Dr. Erwin Armstrong |Jimmy Crystal |Klaus Kickenklober |Jerry |Bowser |Kamek |Koopa Troop |Cranky Kong |Donkey Kong |Foreman Spike

Live-Action FilmsCount Dracula (1931) |Dr. Henry Frankenstein |Frankenstein's Monster |Imhotep (1932) |Griffin |Wolfman (1941) |The Thing (1951) |Max Cady (1962) |Bob Ewell |Mayella Ewell |The Birds |Great White Sharks |The Car |Dean Vernon Wormer |Thulsa Doom (1982) |Rexor |Thorgrim |Set |The Thing (1982) |Skeksis (SkekSo, SkekZok, SkekUng, SkekSil, SkekTek, SkekAyuk, SkekNa, SkekShod, SkekOk, & SkekEkt) |Darkened Creatures |Biff Wilcox |Tony Montana |Alejandro Sosa |Frank Lopez |Richard Vernon |Hector |Alberto |The Skull |Queen Taramis |Bombaata |Thoth Amon |Dagoth |Nacho Contreras |Biff Tannen |BiffCo (Match, Skinhead, & 3-D) |The Libyans |Griff Tannen |Data, Spike, and Whitey |Buford Tannen |Dark Overlords of the Universe |Jacques LaFleur |Chucky |Christopher Sullivan |Damballa |Graboids |Louis Strack Jr. |Robert G. Durant |Cullen Crisp |Eleanor Crisp |Brett C. 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Archibald Snatcher | Villains Wiki | Fandom

Ronin Pest Control Los Angeles area pest control


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on December 29th, 2021

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In order to provide the best los angeles pest control services available to businesses and residences, we keep up to date with modern techniques, new developments, and product effectiveness. The result: We know how to effectively end your pest infestations of 23 different kinds of property-invading animals. Need an exterminator Los Angeles trusts? Call Us!

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Ronin Pest Control Los Angeles area pest control

Black Widow Spiders: Facts & Extermination Information


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on December 29th, 2021

What DoBlack Widow SpidersLook Like?

Black widow spidersare typically black with two reddish triangular markings usually joined to form a reddish hourglass shape on the underside of their abdomen their most recognized feature. Females are occasionally brownish black. Mostblack widow spidersare 3 to 10 mm long, with females being larger than males.Black widow spidershave eight legs and eight simple eyes, including two lateral pairs that almost touch.

Youngblack widow spidersare primarily orange and white but acquire more black color as they mature. They have markings that are very similar to male adults with one or two reddish markings on underneath side of abdomen.

One of the most obvious signs of a spider infestation is the presence of webs in the home or on the property. Black widow spiders usually construct messy and irregular webs located near ground level. Finding a silken sac which holds eggs in the doorway is another sign that a spider infestation is underway.If you see any of these signs, professionalblack widow spider exterminationservices may be necessary.

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Black Widow Spiders: Facts & Extermination Information

An apology to the daddy longlegs in my shower – WCAI


Recommended by Dikshit Aryal, Published on December 29th, 2021

Im feeling guilty about the daddy longlegs in my shower.

She was living peacefully in the upper southwest corner but started tip-toeing down the tile as I stepped in and turned on the spray. I flicked a few drops of water her way so she would stay in her penthouse, but apparently I created a wave that was the insect equivalent of a tsunami. She was washed to the shower floor, where first she seemed to land successfully. She began to skitter away, but then she stopped moving and collapsed, her long, threadlike legs akimbo.

If I went before the judge, I think I could argue accidental death rather than murder but I still felt that I had let down the universe. Daddy longlegs, sometimes called cellar spiders, dont bite, according to local bug expert and Barnstable County entomologist Larry Dapis. Mine was possibly feeding on the algae in the shower (ick), although Larry says no one really knows what daddy longlegs eat, since they are so benign no one has taken the time to study them deeply. They are related to spiders although they dont have silk glands for weaving webs and they have only one pair of eyes instead of four pairs.

Mine was certainly harmless compared to some of the other wild critters that have shared my Cape houses over the years. If you live on here, you know how relentless wildlife can be at getting inside, particularly if you live in an old house that is not, shall we say, airtight?

For example, here are some things besides spiders Ive had in my various houses: fleas, ticks, hornets, bees, termites, birds, mice, rats, bats and raccoons. Of course there have been deer in the backyard and fox at the birdfeeder but they knew their place. And a possum once peered at me through the deck slider but we each kept to our side of the glass.

The flea infestation happened when we were first married and returned from a trip. My husband went to the emergency room because he had so many bites on his legs. But he was too embarrassed to tell them it happened in his own home on Cape Cod so he said hed been at a hunting cabin in New Hampshire.

The mice occasionally got into the kitchen snack drawer in our 1840s house but were particularly obsessed with the Q-tips in our master bath, which they would shred for the cotton. The rats found the birdseed that, in a rookie mistake, we stored in a plastic container in a closet near the backdoor. I called the exterminator right away but lived in fear until he got there that they would leap out at me whenever I opened a kitchen cabinet door. The termites ate the front steps, a fact we discovered after I fell through them and broke my leg.

The raccoon had her kits in our second-floor laundry room that was in a gabled attic-like space with badly installed paneling. We were never sure how she got in maybe through the dryer vent but she made a nest using the insulation between the ceiling panels and the roof and gave birth before we discovered her. I dont even know how to describe the smell but imagine the lion pen at the zoo on a really, really hot day.

We had mice last summer who sneaked in through a hole in the pantry wall and went wild on a Reeses cup. Hey, who wouldnt? Some old-fashioned traps took care of the problem, which shows Im not above being cold-hearted when it comes to things that are more threatening than a daddy longlegs. But, I aim to be judicious and, whenever possible, live a peaceful co-existence with the wild things around me.

I suspect that within a couple of weeks there will be another daddy longlegs in the shower, since the last one was not the first. For whatever reason, that corner is prime real estate. This time I will just try to ignore her as she picks her way around, simply looking for the comfort, peace and security that we all crave.

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An apology to the daddy longlegs in my shower - WCAI


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