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Stern Environmental Group Providing pest control for industry, offices and warehouses. Providing residential and multi-family services for bed bugs. Providing commercial pest control services for warehouses and industrial settings.
Stern Environmental Group Providing pest control for industry, offices and warehouses. Providing residential and multi-family services for bed bugs. Providing commercial pest control services for warehouses and industrial settings.
Stern Environmental Group Providing pest control for industry, offices and warehouses. Providing residential and multi-family services for bed bugs. Providing commercial pest control services for warehouses and industrial settings.

Do You Have Bed Bugs? Find Out Now!

We would like to express our appreciation to Kenneth F. Haynes and Mike Potter, from the bed bug research team at the University of Kentucky Department of Entomology, who have graciously allowed us to use their videos, photos, and information about bed bugs to help inform you of this growing problem in the New York City and New Jersey areas.

The video to the right is of a bed bug feeding filmed by the University of Kentucky Department of Entomology.

What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

Bed bugs are small but visible to the eye; about the size of the nail on your baby finger and light colored to reddish brownish in color. They feed on your blood and the blood of your pets. Adult bed bugs will measure about 1/4 of an inch long about the size of an apple seed. They are sometimes mistaken for cockroaches, ticks or carpet beetles.

Bed bugs are small oval insects about 1/4" in length.Baby bed bugs, called nymphs, will look like an adult bed bug but be lighter in color and somewhat smaller. Bed bugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, ceilings, and other surfaces.

The female bed bug will lay her eggs typically in bedding and carpets in secluded areas. She can lay up to five eggs a day and 500 in her lifetime. Eggs will be small, white in color and you will typically need to use a magnifying glass to see them. They will stick to whatever comes in contact with them. Bed bugs will grow from nymph to adult in typically less than one month's time.

PDF File Get the Bed Bug Traveler Card to keep in your pocket with info on how to identify and protect yourself from bed bugs.

What Are The Signs of Bed Bugs Being Present?

The welt of a mattress showing blood spots and bed bug feces.Bed bugs are typically found near their place of feeding – your bed! Look for dark blood stains and bed bug feces around the welting on your mattress, in the carpeting around your bed, and even in night stand drawers. They like to hide in crevices, mattress welting, and the tufting of mattresses and behind headboards. Keep an eye out for nymph molts – the old exoskeletons of growing bed bugs. Eggs will be too small to see with the naked eye, but the bed bugs themselves will be about 1/4 of an inch long reddish brown and flat and oval in shape.

Bed bugs like to hide in box springs. You may have to remove the bottom dust cover to find bed bugs and treat them. These tenacious small bugs like to hide in fabric and wood more so than plastic. Cracks and crevices of wood bed railings should be inspected for bed bug too. If you store items under your bed, bed bugs will choose to nest in these items as well as in the mattress and box spring themselves.

In hotels and motels, headboards that are screwed into the wall are one of the first places that bed bugs will choose to hide behind and so should be inspected first.

There is a resurgence in bed bugs and they are not just relegated to the New York City area. We are seeing infestations in cities in Ohio, Kentucky, Florida, and Minnesota; in dorms on college campuses, in firehouses, homeless shelters, five-star hotels, and co-ops and apartment buildings. These pests make their way into our environment by hitchhiking on suitcases, returning on backpacks, and by attaching to clothing, after you have visited a site where bed bugs are present. On top of a resurgence and proliferation of this pest, bed bugs are now becoming resistant to mainstream commercial pesticides traditionally found to be effective in their extermination. All this makes for a very difficult problem that is affecting more and more everyday people and creating financial concerns for commercial properties.

Bed bugs hiding inside a mattress. Bed bugs hiding on a screw cover.
Hiding and nesting in your mattress, in this photo of a mattress cut open, bed bugs can be seen along the internal edge. Showing how small these pests are, bed bugs in this photo are hiding on an end table screw cover underneath the table.

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

Bed bug bites look like and can be mistaken for mosquito bites.In this image the bites from a bed bug on this arm could pass for mosquito bites. On close-up, the insertion point of the feeding part of the bed bug has left an ugly red sore. Only 50% of people bitten will have a bite reaction.

Bed bug bites can become inflamed, itchy, red, and sore. They can itch like crazy and sting like a bee sting. Bed bug bites can also appear just about anywhere on your body as bed bugs will bite any skin that is exposed while sleeping (face, neck, shoulders, arms, legs etc.).

While you are sleeping, bed bugs are biting. They puncture your skin with a sharp mouth beak to feed on your blood. It typically takes three to ten minutes for a bed bug to become engorged with your blood before they will withdraw. Watch this video from the University of Kentucky showing a bed bug feeding (opens in a new browser window using Windows Media player). Typically the sleeper will not awaken while bed bugs are feeding. They may insert an anesthetic, like mosquitoes do, while they are feeding on you.

Many people develop itchy red welts and even localized swelling from a reaction to bed bug bites. There is sometimes as much as a day or two delay in the formation of the welt. Sometimes bed bug bites are attributed to mosquitoes or fleas. Before you can be sure that you have a bed bug problem, you should look for signs of the bugs themselves and not just bite marks. We are testing many bed bug monitors to be able to add home owners, property managers, and hoteliers to clearly identify that the pests they have are bed bugs. Find out more about bed bug monitors, bed bug traps, and other new innovative new bed bug extermination or prevention products. Many of these items are available for purchase in our online store.

A back covered with inflamed and sore bed bug bites. Old and new bites on the arm of a bed bug victim.
This person has had a serious reaction to bed bug bites. The bites have become inflamed and itchy. This photo shows old and new bite marks on an arm. It takes a while for the sores to heal. New bites will appear nightly.

All Itches And Welts Are Not Caused By Bed Bugs

Not every red welt that appears on your arms or torso overnight is caused by bed bugs. Read this paper from the University of Kentucky that details other causes of itching before you decide you have bed bugs. Consider renting a bed bug monitor to verify a problem before a bed bug treatment.

For more information we invite you to visit the University of Kentucky's Department of Entomology website on bed bugs.

How Can I Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

As bed bugs are very difficult to get rid of, and many bed bugs are becoming resistant to even professional extermination chemicals, extermination is best left to the professionals. Home remedies do not seem to be effective in killing both adults and eggs. Registered pest control chemicals labeled for use on bed bugs are best. Full eradication typically will take two treatments and sometime three by a professional firm and these trips are usually covered in the initial price that is quoted.

If you are located in the New Jersey, metro New York City region, or Long Island, call us at Stern Environmental Group at 888-887-8376 to schedule your bed bug treatment. We are experts in bed bug extermination and guarantee that you will be bed bug free in no time! Please visit our services page for more important information on our bed bug extermination treatments.

We are now treating for bed bugs in commercial and residential properties with the innovative Cryonite® system that freezes bed bugs dead even eggs. You'll want to find out more about this new effective bed bug treatment today. Read testimonials of bed bug clients and how they feel about our services and attention to detail, you'll find out why we're considered the top bed bug exterminator in the NYC metro and New Jersey area.

The psychological damage that a bed bug problem causes can be devastating to many people. These bugs are so small and so hard to get rid of that we strongly recommend that after professional bed bug extermination you encase all mattresses and box springs in bed bug bite proof encasements. Not only will you sleep easier with this level of additional protection; keeping bed bugs off of you at night, but you will be assured that if there are any eggs or nymphs hiding deep inside your mattress or box spring that they will not be able to ever get out and will eventually die. With our bed bug bite proof encasements there is simply no chance that they can get out to bite you. By encasing any possible left-over bed bugs inside these special covers, you keep your newly treated residence or property completely bed bug free.

The Wall Street Journal has just recently interviewed Douglas Stern, Managing Partner of Stern Environmental Group, on bed bug extermination programs. When you need a bed bug extermination expert you need Stern Environmental. Even the Wall Street Journal turns to him for information on how to treat and get rid of these pesky bugs!

Want More Information?

We have written several feature articles about bed bugs and other pests that will provide even more information that you will find helpful. We invite you to visit our Article Directory to read magazine articles and feature reprints that have been written by our writing staff.


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Stern Environmental Group is a member of the New Jersey Pest Management Association.