As a Tulsa exterminator, I have seen many different insect infestations.  Houses with all sorts of problems.  Many times, a house will have issues with multiple kinds of insects, and need multiple kinds of treatments.  But what about spiders and bed bugs?  Is there a possibility that one bug could take care of the other one?  Will spiders eat bed bugs? Spiders will eat a bed bug if it can get a hold of it.  But the use of spiders to control bed bugs is impractical.

I have seen homes will spider webs up in the corner of rooms full of bed bugs.  In these situations, the bed bug population was quite high.  Orb spiders tend to stay high up on the walls, but bed bugs tend to stay around beds and furniture.  Because of this, only severe bed bug infestations will allow bed bugs to meet spiders.  Because spiders only kill what they would eat, it would take a massive number of spiders to fully control a population of bed bugs.  So in the end, to use spiders to eliminate bed bugs would require a population of spiders so large that you had them in your bed with you!


There are many natural enemies of the bed bug in the insect world.  The masked bed bug hunter will make a quick meal of these pests.  But these insects are 1/2 to 3/4 inches long.  I don’t think that I want to sleep on a bed with a battle between these two insects going on beneath me!  Pharaoh ants are small ants that will also wage a war against bed bugs.  They are pests in their own right and are difficult to eliminate without the help of a good Broken Arrow pest control company.  

Assassin bugs and centipedes will help to control bed bugs.  But both of these insects also bite humans.  The assassin bug will bite us in our sleep around the mouth area, and are known to pass on diseases such as Chagas disease.  Lady bugs are voracious predators, but will only eat a bed bug if they are small nymphs.  At the end of the day, using bed bug predators is a bad option because os the shear number of insects that you would need would make your home uninhabitable.  


All of the above insects prey upon the bed bug for a food source.  This will always lead us to a point where they will stop killing bed bugs because they have fulfilled their need.  Insects only kill other insects in two situations.  The first, as we discussed, is for food.  The second is when another insect is in competition with the bed bug.  Either situation is not practical.  

There is only one organism that competes for harborage with the bed bug.  That is us.  Humans will eradicate bed bugs in order to get a full nights rest.  But there is another organism that kills bed bugs without eating them.  That organism is a particular fungus.  This fungus will set up spores on and in a bed bug and consume its food and water until the bed bug dies.  Some bed bug sprays use this fungus to eliminate bed bugs.  


So, if using natural predators is not the way to go, how do we take care of these pests?  Temperature is a good start.  Bed bugs are sensitive to extreme temperatures.  One method of control is to use the extreme cold.  Freezers can be used in this method, but in order to completely eliminate bed bugs and their eggs, certain thresholds must be met.  The entire infested object must be brought to a temperature of at least 0 degrees Fahrenheit and kept there for four days.  This will ensure that even eggs will be destroyed.  This method is good for small objects, but can be difficult for large ones.  Be warned, opening windows and turning off heat can lead to frozen and damaged pipes, so this method is not good for your whole house.  

Heat can also be used.  Temperatures above 120 degrees Fahrenheit will kill off any bed bugs, and do it a lot faster than the cold.  Keeping your things at this temperature for six to eight hours can be very effective.  The key to keep in mind, though, is that you must get the whole object this hot, including its center.  When these pests start to find the environment uncomfortable, they will bury themselves into the center of a mattress or pillow, or find a crack in the wall to hid inside the wall.  The temperatures required to get these places hot can be too hot to safely apply to your home.  Glues and paints start breaking down at 200 degrees, so this method is not advised for the do-it-yourselfer.  


Chemicals do have their place in pest control methods, but bed bugs can be tricky.  The number one factor when applying pesticides is FOLLOW THE LABEL! I can’t stress this fact enough.  Chemical companies go to great lengths to inform the user on how to use their product.  Incorrect usage of a pesticide can be very dangerous, so be careful.  In the case of bed bugs, they live in the mattresses, box springs and pillows of our beds.  This is the one location in the home that we are not only most vulnerable to bed bugs, but also to pesticides.  The only other object in your home that gets more skin contact than your bed is probably your clothes.  

Because of this, you need to be careful.  Only apply pesticides to a mattress that specifically say that they can be applied to a mattress, and only in the method prescribed.  Never coat the surface that has direct contact with you during sleep.  Apply only to seams, and wash and dry bedding on high heat.  And contact a good Broken Arrow exterminator for help.  

Bed bugs are also very good at building up an immunity to pesticides.  In fact, most over the counter pesticides are already inadequate to deal with modern pests. Most pest control companies will vary their pesticide with each treatment to combat this issue.  For most people, bed bug extermination is something that should be out sourced.  A good solution uses multiple methods described above to get complete control of your pest infestation.  


The best and safest way to rid yourself of both of these pests is to call in a professional Tulsa pest control company.  Here at TermMax Pest Control, we are the best in the business at finding a solution for your particular problem.  We service the greater Tulsa area, including Broken Arrow, Jenks, Bixby, Sapulpa, Pratville, Sand Springs, Turley, Owasso, Claremore, Catoosa, Coweta and much more.  Call today for a free estimate!  We’re here to help!

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