Bed bugs lurking in wardrobes during the day before launching night-time attacks

Sneaky bed bugs are lurking in our wardrobes during the day before launching night-time attacks under the duvet.

By the time we wake up the dastardly critters will have scurried off back to ‘dark crevices’ around the room, a bed bug boff said. Professor Mary Cameron, of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, issued the warning as the UK sees a surge in the beasties.

The warm weather means the typical hatching time is just two days, with a "doubling of the population every couple of weeks".

READ MORE: Brits face mutant 'super' bedbugs as Parisian pests know how to beat insecticides

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Prof Cameron said: "Although they’re called bed bugs, they come into the bed to bite you when it’s dark, but then they scurry away into cracks and crevices within the bedroom.

"So you wouldn’t find them so much in the bed, you’d probably find them inside bedside cabinets, in cracks and crevices, or behind the headboard or in wardrobes, because they like to be in dark places during the day.

"So, after you’ve got up, it’s unlikely that you’ll see them in your bed unless you’ve got a really bad infestation, and you’ll be aware of it then because you’ll have lots of bites."

One of the worst things is trying to get rid of them as there’s widespread resistance to most insecticides, she said. And because the psycho insects stay hidden away it’s unlikely they’ll "get a lethal dose".

The academic said: "So you really need a professional person to go in to do the control, because it could be that they have to dismantle furniture, go behind skirting boards, and they’ll have better equipment to be able to reach the bedbugs that are hiding.

"And it’s also likely that it’s not going to be a one-fix solution – it will possibly require a professional pest controller to go to your house a couple of times to get rid of them."

People also won’t notice they’ve brought back a female bug from a hotel until it’s too late, she added. She said: "You probably wouldn’t be aware of it until after she’s laid her eggs and all the nymphs have hatched.

"They’ll then take a blood meal and rapidly multiply, but you’d only be really aware of it when you’ve got a heavy infestation." British pest firms say they are the busiest they’ve ever been as the infestation is getting worse.

They fear the pests are spreading on public transport or are being carried back from holidays to bed bug hotspots such as Paris. Jamie Ramsey, of Pests of London, said: "We’re snowed under with bed bug inquiries at the moment.”

One firm, covering London, Herts, Beds and Bucks, said it’s handling up to 25 call-outs a week, up from one or two a month ago. Another claimed 90% of calls between London and Luton involved the bugs.

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