Expert says bedbug problem growing in Wichita area

WICHITA, Kan. Two to three times a day, six times a week.

That's how many bedbug cases a local pest expert says his company is working lately.

He says one of the biggest challenges is that people just don't want to talk bout the bug if they find it.

Tim Wallace with Germadic Pest Control says he works multiple bedbug cases around the area every day, and 2017 is the worst year he's ever seen.

Eyewitness News reporter Jacob Albracht suited up with Wallace Monday to see what these bugs are and what to look out for.

Wallace points out that bedbugs are similar to ticks and mosquitoes in that they like to feed on blood. But unlike the other pests, the bedbug stays hidden most of the day.

One sign to look for is fecal matter left behind by the bug.

"What makes it very distinguishable is the dark black," Wallace says.

Bedbugs like to make their homes inside furniture where people are commonly sitting or laying.

Don't let the name "bedbug" fool you. The bugs can be found in more places than just the bedroom. And if things get really bad, it's not just furniture that can be a home for them.

On a call Monday, Wallace pointed out evidence of bedbugs on a light socket.

Wallace says a bedbug problem is treatable, but it is easier to handle if you take care of it early on. He says you should expect to pay anywhere from $800 to $1,500 for a professional treatment.

Tips to prevent bed bugs

*As long as federal labels are followed by the pro, treatment is safe for people, children and pets

*If you are travelling, keep luggage in the bathtub, bedbugs can’t crawl on that surface

*Throw clothes in dryer on high heat as soon as you get home