Can I stop worrying now?
June 29, 2016 7:39 PM   Subscribe

I found some suspicious bites, but the exterminator's search turned up nothing

I found these bites on my leg last Thursday morning. i showed them to a friend who recently had bed bugs and she said they looked just like the bites she got. At first, when I saw a little black bug sauntering across my floor, my mind jumped right to bed bugs. But after some extensive googling I realized it had almost certainly been a beetle (black, 1 cm long, and was longer in shape than bedbugs are supposed to be).

So I called my landlord and he said he would make an appointment with an exterminator. The next thing I know, he calls me at work and says the exterminator is already in my place ( I didn't have time to put away all my stuff or put everything in bags or whatever). But a few hours later the landlord calls me back and says the exterminator checked and didn't find anything. The place did show signs of having been checked when I got home.

The thing is my landlord is not the most diligent of people. I wasn't actually there when the exterminator came, so I don't know what kind of check was performed, but the landlord says it's the same guy he always gets to come check. I just don't know whether I shoudl believe him?

Every time I mention it to someone, i get the same reaction. . . "OMG bed bugs. . . you have to deal with that right away." But I don't really have any proof that there are bed bugs in my bed.

to make matters more complicated, I am moving in one week so I'm also getting the "OMG you don't want to bring the bed bugs into your new place" reaction.

I have a lot of other stress going on at work right now which is making my life a bit hellish, and I just want to stop worrying about these bed bugs.

Or should I? Should I call another exterminator myself and get them to come, or trust the one my landlord got? The only piece of evidence I have is the bites. I have been hanging out outside quite a bit lately, so it's possible that a quartet of mosquitoes decided to prance onto my leg and give me an L-formation of bites just for shits and giggles?
posted by winterportage to Home & Garden (6 answers total)
If it were me and I could afford it, I'd call another exterminator and have them come out. It's worth the peace of mind. I have also had shady landlords before, so I feel ya.
posted by radioamy at 7:43 PM on June 29, 2016 [2 favorites]

Looks like bedbugs are a possibility to me. Their signature is 3 bites in a line, but mine were bigger and puffier than yours. I'd be very careful. They're easy to get rid of if you catch things early.
posted by paulcole at 7:49 PM on June 29, 2016 [1 favorite]

Get the bedbug sniffing dog service, they are both cute and accurate. Those bites look like bedbugs indeed.
posted by rmless at 10:27 PM on June 29, 2016 [1 favorite]

They do look like it, but you can put bedbug traps around your bed or strategically in your apartment if getting a second opinion is too expensive for you. Photograph any evidence you find and bring it to the landlord/exterminators.

I once thought I had bedbugs but it turned out I got bitten up by chiggers. It is possible it is something else; bedbug experts try not to rely on the "breakfast lunch dinner" bite pattern because it can be misleading.

Better safe than sorry for now though, before they potentially spread.
posted by stoneandstar at 10:41 PM on June 29, 2016

Get a passive bedbug monitor and put it in your bed. Twenty bucks or so. If you continue getting bites and see "dirt" on the detector, call the exterminator back; otherwise, don't stress.

A lot of things can cause bite-like reactions; you also might not have gotten bitten at your own pace.
posted by en forme de poire at 12:02 AM on June 30, 2016 [2 favorites]

Pull your bed apart and look. The evidence Is not hard to find.
posted by pintapicasso at 7:39 AM on June 30, 2016 [2 favorites]

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