Bed bugs numbers are on the rise in the Stateline, and all over the county

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Bed bugs.  They’re a creepy, crawly creature that most of us try to forget, but the Rockford Housing Authority is warning to take precautions.  The RHA went as far as calling bed bugs a silent invasion, and they’re not just limited to beds.  They’re anywhere they can get a quick and easy meal.  Those can be public places, where there’s a lot of people.  From there they can hide in bags or anything loose, and move into someone’s home.

“You can go somewhere else and bring them with you.” said Rockford resident Jean Bradley.

Bed bugs, a pest that doesn’t target one lifestyle, socioeconomic status, or type of building, is plaguing the Stateline, but it’s not just here, where numbers are on the rise.

“It’s not just the Rockford area, it’s actually anywhere people congregate.” Ready Pest Control’s Exterminator Service Tech Jared Ashley said.

Ready Pest Control’s exterminator Jared Ashley says an infestation doesn’t just start with bed bugs popping up on your bed.  They will usually hitch a ride until they find a destination with a constant food source, or people to bite.

“All over the place. I mean, movie theaters, restaurants.” said Ashley.  “While you’re traveling, of course, but they don’t have to be just caught from infected beds. You can by used furniture.”

Multi-unit building residents also have to get the pests taken care of quickly, because of how close other people live to one another.  Even though people know they need to get rid of the pests, many hesitate getting an exterminator right away due to embarrassment.

“I was ashamed because I didn’t know what they were.” Bradley said.

“There is some shame, but for no good reason other than people associate bugs with filth, but that’s not the case, especially with these bugs.” Ashley said.  “A lot of times what happens is people try to do it on their own and it progressively gets out of hand.”

Some signs bed bugs are in a home include waking up with bites, seeing dried blood droplets, or even dead bugs in sheets.  A bed has a lot of places for them to hide.

 “Look in the seams of the mattress itself, or any seams of the bed frame, that sort of thing, and look for the dried blood spotting.” said Ashley.

We reached out to the Rockford Housing Authority for more information on specific places that are being affected, but they didn’t return our calls.

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