The Triatominae or most commonly referred to as the kissing bug, assassin bug, or vampire bug, is a warm blooded feeding pests. The kissing bug is found throughout America and therefore is found in California as well. The kissing bug is considered a major threat due to the parasites and diseases they can pass to hosts while feeding. Animal Pest Management Services, Inc will help you identify the kissing bug and share how you can control these blood sucking pests.
What Does a Kissing Bug Look Like?
The kissing bug is a larger insect that can grow over an inch in length, with the female almost reaching one and half inches long. They have a long piercing beak that is segmented into three parts which they use for feeding. They have a small head with a spear or leafed shaped abdomen and wings that they tuck in tightly against their body. Their coloring can vary from black to light brown with brightly colored spots or other patterns on their abdomen. They look rather similar to the stink bug.
Where Do Kissing Bugs Hide in a Home?
The kissing bug will hide during the day and come out at night to feed. The kissing bug will feed on birds, rodents, cats, dogs and people. They will often feed for 20 to 30 minutes where they inject an anesthetizing agent which is in their saliva. The kissing bug can be brought into the home by clinging onto the coats of pets or they will crawl through small cracks or gaps in windows and underneath doors. They will typically inhabit trees, hiding underneath the tree’s bark or in the hollow of trees. As stated, the kissing bug comes out at night looking for a meal. Like bed bugs, they prefer to feed while their host is sleeping.
Kissing Bug Bite Symptoms & Chagas Disease
The bites of the kissing bug often results in swollen, itchy skin. Many will suffer from allergic reactions from the anesthetizing agent in the saliva. However, kissing bugs also carry a parasite that causes Chagas disease that can be fatal without medical care. Cases of kissing bug that caused Chagas disease are higher in Mexico, and in Central America and South America. Chagas disease will first cause high fevers, fatigue, headaches, body aches, and local rash around the site of the bite. As the parasites enter into the body, symptoms will worsen, causing severe swelling around the eyes. Once symptoms occur, seek medical aid immediately.
Kissing Bug Prevention
To control the kissing bug and keep them out of your home, it is recommended you store firewood away from your home. Keep the firewood stacks at least 20 feet away. They love hiding in firewood. Major infestations have been found in fire wood stacks. Next, you will want to keep kissing bugs out of your home by inspecting windows and window screens. Make sure windows are closed and sealed. Additionally, make sure the window screens are secured in place and they don’t have holes or rips. Next check your doors that lead to outside. Make sure the weather stripping is sealed properly and there are no gaps for pests to crawl through. For additional prevention contact a pest control service to come and treat your home to help keep kissing bugs and other pests out.
Kissing Bug Pest Inspections, Control, Treatment & More in San Bernardino, Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside & San Diego Counties, California
If you have found a kissing bug inside your home and want to make sure your home is protected against all pests, contact Animal Pest Management Services, Inc today.