Bed bugs continue to multiply in Winnipeg

by nobugsonme on August 28, 2008 · 2 comments

in bed bugs, canada, manitoba, pest control

The Winnipeg Free Press has a new article Thursday about bed bugs in the city.

Reporter Murray McNeill spoke to local Pest Control Operator Lincoln Poulin:

So how big has the bedbug problem become in Winnipeg?

Poulin said that in his first six years as a full-time exterminator — he’s been doing it for nine years — he only handled two bedbug calls. Last week, the company handled 15 in a single day.

“We also get 10 to 15 people per day, on average, coming into our store to buy sprays and dusts,” he said.

What’s more unnerving is that Poulin said he thinks this is just the tip of the iceberg.

“I don’t even think we’ve started to see the peak in bedbug activity yet. I think the bedbugs will get a lot worse.”

That’s because the critters multiply like crazy, and a lot of Winnipeggers refuse to believe it’s a problem.

“People say, ‘bedbugs? What are you talking about! Bedbugs don’t exist here!'” Poulin said. “But believe me, bedbugs are no longer just a bedtime story.”

Because people are in such denial about the existence of bed bugs, the problem keeps growing. This is big business for Poulin’s, which is experiencing phenomenal growth. And bad news for all of us, as bed bugs spread, and spread, and spread, and bed bugs bite, and bite, and bite.

Public Health Canada entomologist Robbin Lindsay is also cited in the article:

Lindsay said because governments don’t track bedbug counts, it’s hard to say how much they’ve increased in recent years.

And, as we’ve always maintained here at, governments need to track bed bug counts. But they’re in denial too: as long as they do not have an accurate gauge of the scope of the problem, they don’t have to take action.

You can read the rest of the article here.

1 marie November 6, 2009 at 10:37 pm

I have read that bedbugs freeze (to death,I hope) at -5c or below after 5 days- is that true? Cause I would like to keep on taking my brothers & a friend to pick up their Christmas hampers, as I have been doing. I will just be picking them up at their front door & dropping them off. Will the bedbugs, in my car, freeze overnite, if there are any? Buy then it will be Dec. aprox. 10th–15. Would love an answer. Thanks, marie

2 nobugsonme November 6, 2009 at 11:32 pm

-5 degrees C (+23 F) is not very cold.

Michael Potter recommends O F (-18 C) for 1-2 weeks to kill all life stages.

Lou Sorkin killed bed bugs in a very cold freezer (-29 F / -34 C) in five days.

What’s more, if they’re in the car, they may be insulated by the car itself (hiding inside a seat or under a rug, for example) or by items inside the car (if any). So even if your car were to reach and stay at -18C for several weeks solid (without ever getting any warmer), they might not die. But leave them a while longer at that solid temp, to account for the potential insulation) and they probably would.

Sorry that’s not very scientific and it’s also not what you want to hear. We have a FAQ on killing bed bugs with cold temps here:

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