With the exception of heat treatment and fumigation, all traditional techniques and chemical bed bug treatments take time to work. This is because for every bug you see, there are hundreds – thousands in the worst infestations – that you don’t see. Bugs must emerge from their hidden harborages to come in contact with your treatment. We know that bed bugs must take a bloodmeal to move from each life stage to the next. Aprehend capitalizes on this predictable, biology-driven behavior, but explaining this to your clients can be challenging. Since you need their cooperation and patience for success, help to set customer expectations by sharing this timeline of events on the path to eradication.
Day of Service
- Your Pest Management Professional (PMP) will conduct a thorough inspection to determine the extent and severity of the infestation.
- Visible bed bugs may be removed with a specialized vacuum by your PMP.
- All bedding should be removed from the beds. It is not necessary to wash all bedding, but everything must be dried at high heat for at least 40 mins. Don’t forget to heat pillows and comforters and any soft animals or toys that will be returned to the bed after treatment. It is essential that nothing is replaced on or in the bed without having been heat treated to eradicate bed bugs and bed bug eggs.
- The mattress will either be treated with an approved chemical product or encased in a bed bug proof encasement by your PMP. Encasements must be left in place and remain intact for at least 1 year after installation to ensure that any bed bugs trapped inside the encasement cannot escape.
- Aprehend barriers will be placed around the bed frame, box spring, sofas, recliners, and any other furniture where bed bugs are suspected to be harboring. In widespread infestations, additional barriers will be applied around baseboards, crown molding, and door and window frames. Do not disturb the barriers to enjoy Aprehend’s up-to 90 day residual.
- For the complete Aprehend-recommended prep sheet, click here.
0-24 Hours After Service
- Hidden bed bugs that were not accessible to the PMP during inspection and vacuuming will emerge from their harborages overnight and pick up the fungal spores from the treated surfaces.
- Bed bugs return to their harborages covered with the spores and spread them to others in their harborage by direct contact.
1-8 Days After Service
The spores will germinate within 24 hours of contact with the bed bugs, penetrating the cuticle (exoskeleton) and grow inside. This kills the bed bug by a non-toxic mode of action within 3 to 7 days.
8–14 Days After Service
Not all bed bugs will emerge from their harborage on the first night after service. Some bed bugs will have recently fed just prior to service and will sit dormant to digest their blood meal. If these dormant bed bugs have not been exposed to the spores by their harborage mates, they will emerge within a week and will become exposed during their nighttime wanderings. These bed bugs can be expected to die within 2 weeks of the service.
14-28 Days After Service
- Some female bed bugs may have laid eggs even up to a week after the service was conducted. Adult females that fed just prior to the service may continue to lay eggs for up to 10 days after taking a blood meal.
- Bed bug eggs can take up to 14 days to hatch into 1st instar bed bugs.
- Once hatched, 1st instar bed bugs will emerge to seek their first blood meal, with an average death of 3-7 days from exposure to Aprehend.
30 Days After Service
- All bed bugs should now have been exposed to the spores and died.
- Your PMP may return to verify that there is no live activity remaining.
- In some instances, a second application may be required to ensure eradication, but in most cases the infestation will be eradicated.