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Old 08-06-2011, 16:09   #1
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Bed Bugs

Hi all,
We seem to have acquired bed bugs and are being slowly eaten alive, any ideas on how to get rid of them most welcome.

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Old 08-06-2011, 16:34   #2
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Re: bed bugs

We seem to have acquired bed bugs and are being slowly eaten alive, any ideas on how to get rid of them most welcome.
The pesticides that are legal are not as effective as those not legal at least here in the US. You need to use a "bomb". You button up the boat and pull the trigger and it fumigate the whole boat. You need to be gone for 24 hours. It should be good for roaches and squirrels too. Killing the larvae is the big problem with all the serious bug problems. Bed Bugs would be on that list. It's a serious hotel problem here in the US too. Not good for business. It's not talked about unless you stay some place that has them. You'll talk about it then. Contact a local exterminator to see what really works - that you can buy or require a professional to apply. Bed bugs are a serious problem to be rid of and you obviously know why.

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Old 08-06-2011, 17:08   #3
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Re: bed bugs

Whatever you do, DO NOT USE A ROACH BOMB!

Foggers (somehow) spread and multiply bedbugs. Maybe it just pisses them off, but it's fairly well known (in the bedbug community) that bug bombs only make bedbugs worse.

My Dad's apartment building got bedbugs last year, so I have a bit of experience... The main thing I learned is that they are next to impossible to completely get rid of. In the end, I had to convince my dad to move because in a multi-unit building it is absolutely impossible to completely get rid of them (mostly because people can't seem to understand the process, and it's difficult to get the cooperation of every single person who walk's in and out)

You need to start by putting all your clothing, shoes, linens, curtains, towels, seat covers, Anything that has a washable fabric... Put them in plastic bags, and remove them from the boat. They need to be washed and dried with as much heat as possible. Heat will kill the bugs. whatever can't use dryer heat, soak it in extemely hot water (boil it!).
and be sure to destroy the bags when you're done.

Do not bring this stuff back to the boat until you are %100 positive the bugs are gone.

Next step is to use a commercial chemical specifically for bedbugs. All of the current chemicals work, but the bugs have the ability to ADAPT to the chemicals. So you need to treat several times (like once a week for several weeks) with 2 or 3 different chemicals, until they are completely gone.

There are alot of remedies out there, but nothing is really suited for a boat except chemicals.

Good luck doing this while living on the boat... You might consider getting a hotel for a few weeks and hire a professional with a guarantee for bedbug elimination. Make sure the hotel doesn't have bedbugs

If you have to bring stuff onto and off the boat, keep everything in plastic bags to prevent spreading them... Spreading them is the most important consideration. The worst thing you can do is bag up everything and throw it away. You will only contribute to the problem (which is bordering on epidemic proportions in the US right now). They can live for over a year sealed up in a bag...

Do some googleing on how to prevent spreading them (for our sake!).

If you have the money, a (well known) professional is your best bet. Luckily a boat is small enough that there's only a few places they can really hide... it shouldn't be too terribly difficult. But even on a boat, it's not a simple process to go through and it will take some time.
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Old 08-06-2011, 18:00   #4
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Re: bed bugs

Welcome Aboard CF

Play it safe and get a professional exterminator,
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Old 08-06-2011, 18:49   #5
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Re: bed bugs

The professional exterminator approach may be best, however, 30 years of killing bugs in horticulture has taught me a few things. First, all professionals are limited in what they can use by what is an allowable use on the label of the pesticide. In other words, an effective control agent may not be used by a professional because the particular use is not on the label because the manufacture didn't want to pay to have that use included, but the agent may still be effective. Example - an agent that kills bugs on corn can't be used on your daisies when daisies aren't on the label. You can, but most professionals won't.

Synthetic pyrethroids come from the perennial Painted Daisy (pyrethrum sp.) and can basically be eaten with a spoon without harm to humans, and there are some very effective ones that should do the job, like Crossfire. Bedbugs hide everywhere so were it me, I would use a handheld steam cleaner you can rent for mattresses and all cloth surfaces, accompanied by washing everything you can at high heat (above 120 degree water temp), and spraying pyrethroids over all wood surfaces, under drawers - in other words, everywhere - with a high quality hand sprayer that will put out a mist. You need to repeat the spray every 10 days for 3 repeats to make sure the hatchlings are killed before they can reproduce. Turn the heat up to encourage hatching. You may need to make friends with a local farmer or greenhouse grower to get the right pesticide. Crossfire would be my choice, which has a "Caution" label, which basically means it is as safe as you can get. However, it is highly toxic to fish, so it may only sold to professional applicators, ergo the possible need to make friends with a farmer.

Here is a link to information on the class of chemical that should do the job. This also discusses the very low toxicity of the agent. EXTOXNET PIP - RESMETHRIN
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Old 09-06-2011, 05:46   #6
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Re: bed bugs

In my backpacking days I would squirt the bed with Baygon cockroach spray and then cover the bed with my sheet. Trapping the lil bastards in with the baygon.

I don't think a little squirt of pesticide is going to kill you. If it does send me an email.

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Old 09-06-2011, 07:14   #7
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Re: bed bugs

Interesting programme on UK tv last week showed a house being cleaned by using heat. Apparently they can't stand a rise in temperature. House was sealed up by the firm, heating switched on and some extra forced hot air applied from the outside. It nearly worked except the 1930s terrace house (Corrie st) next door was the source of the infestation so they came back. Once they sorted next door out, problem was gone.

I would be reaching for the yellow pages and calling someone in.

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Old 09-06-2011, 08:35   #8
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Re: Bed Bugs

see my comment, page 5 of the cockroach thread.

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Old 10-06-2011, 00:47   #9
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Re: Bed Bugs

Callmecrazy has the right idea. We had a hotel for some years and bugs are in epidemic proportions. They hop onto your luggage and hitch a ride to the next place.
They have a real affinity with cracks and crevices (I'm mostly talking aobut furniture!) so can be really be difficult of get at. Places like bedbase slats, behind headboards attached to walls, inside power points ( they will travel up conduit to the next room).
I would think that getting them out of a boat would be really difficult as you can't spray every crack and crevice. If you can find a fumigant that will kill them then that would be the best bet. In the pub we mist sprayed the rooms and then applied surface spray directly to suspect areas. You will need to come back a few times.
We ended up doing all rooms on a regular basis, bugs or not. A real nuisance.
They leave telltale little red blotches (bug poo that looks like blood) which will show where they have been hiding.
There it lots of control info on the internet as they are such a major hassle.
Best of luck!
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:54   #10
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Re: Bed Bugs

Thanks for all the replies, I guess there is no easy solution. We picked up the bugs while cruising here in the Carib. I will check out the local pest controllers, if not maybe head back to Uk and let a few cold English winters sort them out!!

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