Did your city make the bed bug list?
Baltimore tops this year's Top 50 Bed Bug Cities list, released today by pest control leader Orkin. In the six years Orkin has released the bed bug city rankings, this is the first time Baltimore has made the top five, moving up nine spots since last year. Four metro regions -- Las Vegas, Portland, Salt Lake City and Greensboro-High Point-Winston Salem -- made the list for the first time this year.
Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Phoenix have once again made Orkin’s list of the Top 50 metro areas for bedbugs.
Orkin ranked major cities based on data of where the company performed the most bedbug treatments from December 2015 to Nov. 30, 2016.
The ranking includes commercial and residential properties, the company said in a statement. The list came out Tuesday.
The top five cities were Baltimore, Washington, Chicago, New York and Columbus, Ohio. Portland, Ore., ranked 50th. On Orkin’s list last year, Chicago ranked No. 1 for the fourth year in a row and Washington ranked third. Baltimore ranked 10th.
A full list of this year’s bedbug rankings by Orkin can be found on the company’s website.
Bed bugs developing 'thicker skin' to beat insecticides
The pests are starting to become a real problem, said Ron Harrison, Orkin entomologist and director of technical services. And they aren't limited to mammoth metropolises. Mid-sized cities in the South, Midwest, West Coast and even Hawaii made this year's top 50 list. In fact, nearly all of the nation's pest professionals have had to deal with the little buggers.
"We have more people affected by bed bugs in the United States now than ever before," Harrison said. "They were virtually unheard of in the U.S. 10 years ago."
But bed bugs aren't evidence of poor hygiene or cleanliness, Harrison explained. Anyone can get them. All they need is blood to survive and they're also good travelers, often latching onto luggage, purses and other items during travel. Besides bedrooms, the critters are spotted at movie theaters, in public transportation, offices and libraries.