Think you have bed bugs? Short on cash? Commercial bed bug monitors (such as those in our FAQ) can cost $20 per bed or more.
The University of Florida has now produced a helpful video explaining how consumers can construct homemade interceptor bed bug traps.
(Click here to view the video if you don’t see it above.)
Bed bug traps, including interceptor or pitfall monitors of this type, can help determine if you have bed bugs before treatment, and help determine whether bed bugs are gone during and after treatment.
Of course, lots of people have made their own interceptor-style monitors. However, if you’re going to do it, there are some pitfalls (see what I did there?) and it’s best to learn from the experts.
Note that calling this type of monitors “bed bug traps” as the University of Florida folks are doing does not mean you are likely to catch all your bed bugs and eliminate a problem in this way (as the word “trap” may suggest). We usually prefer the term “monitor” to “trap” for this reason.
If you have bed bugs, in most cases you will need thorough treatment to eliminate the problem. The exception will be if you had a very new problem and small number of bed bugs, and got lucky in the sense that they happened to all walk through the monitor and get stuck. That might happen, but don’t count on it.
Note also that interceptor traps are not your only option and their use is — like so many things in the bed bug world — not without controversy.
Be sure and read our FAQ on bed bug monitors, which goes into some of the pros and cons of interceptor monitors and other monitoring methods.