Bed bugs bite Edmonton

by nobugsonme on October 4, 2009 · 8 comments

in alberta, bed bug treatment, bed bugs, bed bugs in condos and coops, canada, edmonton, landlords and tenants

The Edmonton Sun reports that

Swarms of bloodthirsty bedbugs are taking over entire apartment buildings across the city, and public health officials warn that it’s only getting worse.

And how do bed bugs come to take over “entire apartment buildings”?

Step one: when tenants complain of bed bugs, treat once and never follow up.

[Tenant April Lariviere] first noticed the bugs in her furniture last spring. It’s gotten so bad in her northside apartment that she’s had to throw out their mattresses, couches and chairs. They now sleep on air mattresses on the living room floor.

“We’re living in Tupperware containers,” she said. “Everything has to be sealed up to keep the bedbugs off.”

She said the building was fumigated in the spring, but the bugs came right back.

“Nothing’s happened since them,” she said. “There was no follow-up.”

[Emphasis mine.]

Bed bugs are not new to Edmonton; the city has been struggling for years.

What are the laws regarding bed bugs in Edmonton?  According to the CBC,

Alberta‘s public health act and housing regulations require a landlord to provide a tenant with a healthy and habitable environment. A tenant with bedbugs is advised to report the dwelling to the regional health authority. Health inspectors will then assess the problem and in most cases order the landlord to take care of it.

In the Sun article, Ken Dong, a senior environmental health official with Alberta Health, notes matters are complicated in the building Lariviere lives in, because many tenants are renting their suites from individual condo owners who live out of town.  But Alberta Health is now on the case:

After several complaints from tenants, Dong said, a health inspector recently went through the place again and informally told the management company to work with the condominium board and tenants to get rid of the pests.

Dong acknowledged that it’s complicated because most of the suites’ owners live out of town and rent them out.

He said inspectors will continue to monitor the building, and if they’re not satisfied with how the infestation is being handled, they can slap the condo board with a formal order. Failure to comply with the order could result in fines. They can also order suites vacated.

It would be a shame if the tenants lost their homes after having suffered from bed bugs for so long.  Let’s hope it does not come to that.

Living in the Edmonton area? 

Capital Health has a Bed Bug Prevention PDF and a Bedbugs Fact Sheet; you can download both here.

1 laurie jensen June 11, 2010 at 7:12 pm

If anyone would like to donate some of the little suckers, I would gladly take them to test a product on, or I will come to your house to test the spray. Leave a message at

2 laurie jensen June 11, 2010 at 7:13 pm

oops leave message at thanks

3 nobugsonme June 12, 2010 at 2:28 am

For what it’s worth, we’re told the going rate for researchers buying bed bug samples in NYC is several dollars per bug.

You might also want to know for sure who you were donating or selling them to.

4 laurie jensen June 12, 2010 at 11:56 am

If you’ld prefer to keep them to yourself, that’s cool !

5 nobugsonme June 12, 2010 at 1:12 pm

Hi laurie,

That wasn’t my point!

I’m curious what spray you’re testing.

6 laurie jensen June 12, 2010 at 1:54 pm

I’m testing a non toxic spray that anyone can have around the house. I got bed bugs once unfortunately from someone I was seeing. We checked and sprayed mattresses and furniture several times, but I found the only way to get rid of them was to have sparay within reach at all times. I’m testing a product that you can have around and not have to worry about children and pets getting into it.


7 nobugsonme June 13, 2010 at 12:36 am

Keep in mind that there are a variety of substances which are “contact killers.” Many of these boast of being “non-harmful” to humans or pets if used properly, but all are “toxic” to bed bugs.

However, a contact kill spray is not sufficient to get rid of a bed bug infestation. It is usually not possible to find and kill all of the bed bugs present. Most people with bed bugs rarely see them.

So regardless of whether the spray works as a contact killer, users will likely also need other methods with residual or mechanical effects, to keep killing bed bugs which happen upon them.

In any case, few readers look at old threads like this one. You might consider posting to the forums in order to reach more people.

8 laurie jensen June 13, 2010 at 10:45 am

I agree that a thorough spray must be done by a professional company first. The problem that I faced and that many faced is that the bugs are never all gotten. I would come home and see ‘random’bugs. The way I rid myself of the problem was to have spray at hand at all times. I live in a moderately sized house and was anticipating a nightmare ending with destroying all of my belongings. Fortunately I have been bug free for over 2 years.
I appreciate you imput.

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