Bed bugs on the rise in Grayson County

By: Kristen Shanahan Email
By: Kristen Shanahan Email

GRAYSON COUNTY, TX -- As you pack up and head home from your summer vacation there is one souvenir you will not want to bring back with you. Grayson County pest controllers tell us they are seeing an increase in a pesky problem that might make your skin crawl.

At least five different pest control companies in Grayson County say just four years ago they rarely treated bed bugs and now they are getting multiple calls every month, some even several calls a week.

Pam Orr says nearly two months ago her daughter got sick after her Sherman apartment complex became infested with bed bugs.

"She could see them crawling up through the walls in to the carpet, and she herself my daughter had such an allergic reaction she ended up on the emergency room," Orr said.

According to the CDC, bed bugs are not known to spread disease, but their bites could cause a serious allergic reaction in some people. Bites can also lead to excessive scratching that may result in a skin infection.

"The rash was so bad she didn't know what it was and at the emergency room they told her there's been a bad bed bug problem in Grayson County," Orr said.

Owner of Results Environmental Pest Management, Art Harmon, says he has been in the business for more than 30 years. Just four years ago he had never encountered bed bugs. Now, he responds to up to five calls a week. He says because it is more affordable, there has been an increase in travel and that has made it easy for the bugs to spread, but there are other factors at play too.

"The decrease in use of the extremely toxic and long lasting residual pesticides that we had years ago," Harmon said.

Harmon says the pests are about the size of an apple seed and can often be spotted in the crevices of furniture. He says you can also detect them from their droppings.

"Fecal marks which of course they're diet is blood so their fecal material is going to be blood related so it's going to be reddish to rusty colored on the sheets and bedding materials," Harmon said.

Harmon says there are sprays you can buy off the shelves, even products that can prevent you from carrying them home.

"A simply pyrethrin spray that has no residual that you could treat the cracks, crevices of luggage," Harmon said.

However, if you do have bed bugs it is best to call pest control.

Harmon says one single bed bug carried home in your suit case could lead to an infestation. He says bed bugs feed off blood and the average female lays one to seven eggs a day for about 10 days after feeding.

For more information on bed bugs visit the CDC's website at http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/bedbugs/faqs.html.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by ANON. on Jul 11, 2012 at 09:03 PM
    BED BUGS ALSO ONLY APPEAR ON 1 OUT OF 3 PEOPLE, SO YOU MAY HAVE BITES AND NOT KNOW IT. THESE BUGS DO NOT DISCRIMINATE EITHER
  • by Dahai Location: USA on Jul 11, 2012 at 07:46 PM
    If bed bugs can crawl from other apartments, all of exterminators fail (100% failure rate). You only need 3 hrs to completely solve the bed bug problem and visit friends without carrying them with an innovative method (0% failure rate). The video and attached text describes how to build sticky barriers to protect top of bed, tables, chairs, clothes, and shoes. After you heat bedding sheet, pillows, blanket, and clothes you are going to wear in a dryer, top of bed and your body are protected by sticky barriers anytime anywhere at your home. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTdOxn9MoPg
  • by Only on Jul 11, 2012 at 07:20 PM
    Only dirty poor people have bedbugs.
  • by Bedbug Survivor, Part 2 Location: Sherman, TX on Jul 11, 2012 at 09:17 AM
    Also just a word of caution. Most online resources advise you to completely throw out any infested mattresses you may have. If you do, DO NOT put it out on your curb, because some unsuspecting passerby may think the bed is perfectly okay and take it! Also do not pick up couches, mattresses, dressers off the curb either, because you don't know WHY the previous owner may have gotten rid of it!
  • by Bedbug Survivor Location: Sherman, TX on Jul 11, 2012 at 09:13 AM
    From experience I can say be very careful about buying secondhand or refurbished furniture. In 2007 I purchased furniture from a well-known secondhand furniture store in Sherman.It took about 2 months before we discovered the mysterious "bites" we were getting were actually bed bugs.I called pest control immediately,but at least back then they quoted $1500 because bed bugs are so difficult to treat. I did my research online! You can flip your mattress and lift your box frame and easily spot those little creeps! You can use a steamer to kill them on site and followed with a indoor pesticide.Also,I sprinkled diatomaceous earth (DE)before I placed the box frame back down and along my base boards.I did the same thing around couches, sofas and chairs too. DE is like "death by a million cuts" to insects.I also ordered mattress covers for all of our mattresses.This suffocates any bedbugs and their eggs inside.Before it was said and done I spent $300 in getting rid,but that beats $1500!
    • reply
      by recent survivor of bedbugs on Jul 12, 2012 at 09:28 AM in reply to Bedbug Survivor
      I would like to say that this happened to me and I lost everything. my couch and beds. My kids and I are staying on the floor which is now replaced due to a wonderful landlord who was right on these bugs trail...... (D.E.) is working for us too. We cant wait to get back to normal. See we moved into this place about four months ago and after being here a month we started getting bites wich i thought were flea bites because i have pets. Well little did i know one nite i would wake up and these little vampires as i call them would be biting me and sucking my blood. Having these pest is no joke and I wouldnt wish this on anyone.....I researched them and learned a lot. I know that alcohol also kills them if you put it right on them and I also learned that some bed bugs look like rolly pollies. the little grey ones. Just know that bed bugs can stay in a home for a year even if no one is in it. They feed off the skin dander we shed. I hope this info helps someone....because lord knows these pest are a really big problem if you get them.....
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