02.2
21

Toronto leads Canada in bed bugs, but COVID crawls back …

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Toronto was listed as the top bed bug city in 2020 among 25 Canadian cities, according to Orkin Canadas annual bed bug report. Photo by ORKIN CANADA /ORKIN CANADA

However, Orkin Canada said its expected that once the economy reopens, bed bugs cases will rise again.

Due to their ability to double in population about every 16 days, it should not be difficult for bed bugs to regain their grip on the Canadian market, the company said.

Behind Toronto in the top 10, in order, are Sudbury, Oshawa, Vancouver, Winnipeg, St. Johns, Scarborough, Whitby, Edmonton and Ottawa.

Compared to the previous year, Toronto and Vancouver kept their No. 1 and 4 spots respectively, while Ottawa fell from 5 to 10 and Whitby rose from 20 to 8.

The survey results are based on the number of commercial and residential bed bug treatments carried out by the company from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2020.

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Toronto Public Health didnt provide a comment about the survey, but directed media to the city website that provides instructions for preparing an insect sample for bed bug identification. It said the three steps are prevention, identification and treating the problem.

It is possible for anyone to have an infestation of bed bugs, regardless of income or housing. Bed bugs and bed bug infestations are not considered a health hazard, the department says on the website. However, secondary health concerns include skin infections and allergic reactions from insect bites, as well as the stress and anxiety of dealing with extreme infestations.

People can use proactive prevention tips such as careful examination of bags and clothing, drying potentially infested bed linens or clothing on the highest heat setting, and inspecting all second-hand or returning office furniture, said Orkin Canada.

jyuen@postmedia.com

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Toronto leads Canada in bed bugs, but COVID crawls back ...

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