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Help: Managing pesticide+PCO expectations, physical removal techniques

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  1. (deleted)

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sun Aug 21 2016 12:06:53
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    Hi everyone,

    I'm having my own bed bug problem here, and I'd like some advice (some specific questions are at the bottom). First, some background:

    I've moved into a new rented row-house in a city in the Canadian prairies (~1100 sq ft finished between 2 floors, plus unfinished basement) a month back. I caught a bug, google'd, and gave it to my landlord, who arranged for a PCO (hopefully at their cost). I'm not sure where the bugs came from.

    I've received 1 treatment from the PCO. I'm not sure I fully trust the company/tech, as they seemed pretty lax about things, but maybe it was just communication style. I felt like I almost had to convince the tech to do a walk-around my place. He gave vague instructions (e.g. "Don't clean near the baseboards for a while." How near? Which types of cleaning? How long is "a while"?). Lastly, he was done treating and packing up in less than 30 minutes. He said he sprayed the baseboards, my bed frame, and the sides + bottom of my mattress. Phoning the company later, they use "Tempo" as their pesticide for bed bugs.

    Since the treatment, I've taken up inspecting my wooden bed frame and killing them manually every night before I sleep, using pens (stabbing/dislodging), index cards (dislodging) and tissue (squishing). I've also started removing eggs using sticky tape.

    I'm now at day 12 after the first treatment. Since the beginning of my stabbing, I seem to be getting fewer adults (1-4 per night instead of 8+ on day 1), but I'm still continuing to find adults (and younger ones). Luckily, I have a second treatment scheduled on day 15.

    ****Questions****

    1) What should I be expecting after the use of the pesticide? The company says it has residual effects, but how quickly do exposed bugs die from the residual? I was hoping that most of the unhatched bugs wouldn't make it to adulthood, or that they would die within 2-3 days of exposure. Is this realistic?

    2) Is it usual for a treatment to be that quick? Granted, I don't have too much stuff in the way, and a lot of it is in the unfinished basement.

    3) Should I be pointedly asking my landlord to see if my neighbour was inspected and/or treated? She seems to think I probably have a "minor" infestation, whatever that means...

    4) Is my method of stabbing +/- squishing the bugs detrimental to the treatment plan? Will the bugs signal to others not to come near, and ruin the point of the residual?

    5) Is there any recommended surface treatment like bleach that can reliably kill eggs? There are some individual items that I want to reclaim and put into use, but they might not survive heat. I would also want to disinfect some items to remove clutter from the hot zones, making further treatment/inspection easier.

    Thanks for reading through that massive post, and for any help that you can give. Lastly, thank you nobugsonme for setting up this community and having those awesome FAQs.

  2. bitemelady

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon Aug 22 2016 21:19:52
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    First of all, I am replying to hopefully bump up your post--because I am hoping that those who are more expert/experienced than I will respond if they see it near the top.

    Next, I would document everything. In my experience last month, after the PCO did their initial spray then I never any adults again. Knock on wood (although I now worry weeks later that I am possibly reinfested); at least with the PCO that my landlords sent over (I also had no choice), they said that I shouldn't see any live ones for at least a few weeks afterwards--except in the first 18 hours following the spray then they might come out but die right off.--I guess that kind of answers (in my experience) what I was told in response to your question #1.

    Also I found numerous errors and took issues with the treatment-plan executed by my PCO. During their first visit they were in-and-out in less than 20 minutes or so.. and during their last visit the technician was in the apartment for 8 minutes... (I know this exactly because he had me wait in the hall and then lock up after him). I am keeping a log of the times and dates of their treatment. If/when I am reinfested then I will be emailing the company again, because when I emailed following their first treatment (with concerns about the 20 minute treatment, a ripped encasement, and a soiled bed-skirt left in my 'safe-zone'..meaning they spread the bugs essentially) then I got the attention of the company owner and he made sure that they came back the following Monday to re-spray, replace the encasement, and sent a more experienced technician.
    --If possible, I learned to document and report errors made by the PCO in an email to the landlord, Maintenance, and all possible emails for the PCO.

    That is just my naive advice. I hope more experts weigh in and help you. I really hope you don't have to stab them for any longer. I usually keep a bottle of 91% isopropyl alcohol nearby just in case they come out again.

  3. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon Aug 22 2016 23:02:05
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    To the OP (formerly edgarf) I sent you an email.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  4. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon Aug 22 2016 23:15:53
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    So you've found, what, 30-40 bed bugs?

    That you're finding fewer now than on day 1 is good. It's really probably making a big difference -- each bed bug you take out.

    I don't know if what you're doing would make them give off any alarm pheromones. An expert would have to answer that. However, search and destroy is very worthwhile.

    You may be interested in dry vapor steam: http://bedbugger.com/how-to-get-rid-of-bed-bugs-bed-bug-faqs/pest-control/faq-killing-bed-bugs-with-steam/

    It's not cheap to get a low end dry vapor steamer, but if you have one or can get access to one, it can be helpful. You would want to make sure you weren't steaming away the pesticides, though.

    Most PMPs don't use just one method -- two different sprays, or a spray and a dust, or steam and a spray and a dust are more common approaches.

    Follow-ups in about 2 weeks are the norm, and the PMP may use a different product the second time. Coming back with just the Tempo may work, but may not be ideal. Click the tag at the top of the thread to see threads tagged "tempo".

    You should ask the landlord if neighbors are having a professional inspection. S/he may ignore you, but ask.


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