Bed Bugs 101

Bed Bugs 101 in Utah

Bed bugs are back and are making the lives of many people a living nightmare. The number of bed bug cases in the United States continues to climb and doesn’t appear to be going away any time soon.

Reddish brown bed bug feeding on an arm

Bed bugs cause sleepless nights. Nobody wants to go to bed knowing they are going to get bit all night long.

bed bug feces and egg cases on a sheet

Bed bugs make you feel itchy and gross. They leave a disgusting wake of feces, egg casings and shed skins behind.

yellow shed skin of a bed bug

Bed bugs also cause a long term emotional trauma. Fear, anxiety and phycological difficulty can be linked to bed bug infestations.

Bed Bug Experts

Few pests are as difficult to control as bed bugs.

Thorn professionals are highly trained to rid your home or business of bed bugs.

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How To Prevent Bed Bugs

How does a commercial property prevent bed bugs? Here are a few simple steps to help.

Close up of a bed bug full of blood

Preventing bed bugs starts with education. Correct identification, signs of bed bugs, and how to avoid infestations are all things staff and tenants need to understand.

Scheduling inspections and preventative treatments are also key to prevent bed bugs. Making sure you are sticking to a schedule for inspections and treatments will make a huge difference in staying on top of bed bugs.

Kevin Thorn in front of a group of people sitting down

Step 1: Educate

Educate your staff and tenants on how to identify bed bugs and how to avoid infestations.

Pest professional inspecting for pests inside of a hotel

Step 2: Inspect

Schedule and maintain professional bed bug inspections.

Thorn professional treating for bed bugs in a hotel room

Step 3: Prevent

Schedule and maintain preventative bed bug treatments.

White bed bug monitor being placed under a bed leg.

Step 4: Monitor

Utilize bed bug monitors to identify bed bug infestations easily.

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What You Need To Know About Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are hard to find, resistant to modern pesticides, and extremely pervasive, thus, they require considerable professional expertise.

Bed bug feeding on an arm

Bed Bug Biology

The purpose of this brief biology lesson is to make you a bit wiser about bed bug behavior.

The first thing we should talk about is that you are their food source. They feed on blood anywhere from three to twelve minutes one to three times per week. They prefer human blood, but they’re opportunistic and will feed off a dog, a cat, a mouse, or a hamster.

Females lay two to three eggs per day—they are egg-laying machines. Those hatch in seven to ten days. They have five nymph stages and are adults in one to two months, as long as they have a food source.

The average life span of a bed bug is six months to a year and a half. They can live a long time without feeding, some as long as six to twelve months.

Bed bugs are cryptic and spend most of their time hiding in cracks and crevices waiting for their food, aka you, to return.

Reddish brown bed bug feeding on an arm

Bed Bug Sex

Bed bugs have a unique way of copulating. It is called forced insemination.

Basically, the male has a harpoon shaped genital that pierces the female cuticle in the abdomen. Women always think this sounds very pleasant. Females get copulated with often, generally after a blood meal, as males prefer to mate with fat females, so they almost always have enough sperm to continuously produce fertilized eggs.

A female has  to ovaries with 14 ovarioles and therefore always has plenty of eggs to lay. One adult female can cause an infestation. She gets brought in, starts laying eggs. Those eggs hatch and in 1-2 months they are adults and begin to breed with each other and we have an infestation.These behaviors are part of why bed bugs are so successful.

Bed bug feeding on an arm

Bed Bug Bites

Bed bug bites are very difficult to identify and not everyone has the same reactions.

Determining whether or not bed bugs are present should not be from bites alone. You need to find the bugs. Some people are not allergic to bed bug bites while others are very allergic and get red welts. People can also have a delayed reaction where the bites do not show up for up to fourteen days.

Bed bugs don’t seek out water or eat cookies or crumbs left by your children, they feed on your blood. They feed from 3-12 minutes and then head back into hiding to digest the blood meal. Watch a bed bug feed here.

Bed bugs on the box springs of a mattress in Salt Lake

Bed Bug Aggregation

This is an aggregation of bed bugs on the bottom of a box spring. 

The box spring is a very common place to find bed bugs. The underside of the box spring on the head side of the bed is probably the best place to inspect for bed bugs. Whichever seat has the best view of the TV is also another great place to inspect.

How do I prevent bed bugs?

  • Become educated about bed bugs
  • Be careful about buying used furniture
  • Be careful when guests come and stay with you
  • Inspect your rooms when traveling
  • Inspect your beds for signs of bed bugs on a regular basis (Monthly is awesome)
  • If you travel a lot it can be a good idea to store luggage in the garage
  • When traveling don’t place luggage on or near beds

How do I get bed bugs?

Bed bugs are synanthropic, meaning that they live in close association with humans. They do not spontaneously generate and therefore they must be brought into a home or property.

They are most often brought in on used furniture, luggage or bags, or from hitchhiking bed bugs on a visitor or house guest. When someone lives in a place that has bed bugs, especially heavy infestations, it is not uncommon for them to have bed bugs in their clothes, shoes, or belongings.

Client Testimonials

Thorn prides itself on being among the best commercial pest control providers in Utah.

Nate did an amazing job! He went above and beyond and we are so impressed with the quality of Thorn professionals!

Barbara and John L

Cyrus did an awesome job at my house. He was really thorough and answered all my questions!

Amy K

Bayron is amazing, thorough and very kind! We love him!

Kaylynn C

Garrett has been phenomenal and excellent! I am really happy with the diligence he has expressed while taking care of the cockroaches!

Stephen T

Mitchell was wonderful and very thorough!  You guys are great.  You are doing such a service for us.  I really, really appreciate it!

Pat B

I want to give kudos to Mitchell.  He is so genuinely kind and thorough.  We sure appreciate him!  He was very professional and in the bigger picture he was very kind when he was asked to do specific things.

Lynette B

I was very impressed with Paul.  He did an amazing job, and I wouldn’t have any qualms about having him back any time!

John F

Ryan was really great to work with.  He was really kind and patient.  I always have questions and he answered them all for me.  He was really polite and professional.

Jesse L

Bayron was polite and respectful and did a thorough job!

Jennifer P

Paul is a very, very nice man.  When we have questions, he explains everything to us very well.  I really appreciate that!


Bed bugs can be difficult to control. Thorn can help.

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How Thorn Can Help

Pests can be difficult to control, but that’s what we are here for. We create a strategic plan to gain control of your problem and make sure we get results.

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Thorn's Approach

We take a scientific approach to pest control. We start with an inspection and assessment to help us identify the pest, locate where they are, and create a specific plan for your property. Every home and business is different and requires a unique strategy.

Bye bye, bed bugs.