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The nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., is not only home to the White House but also a wide range of pests. Due to the city’s population, human activity, climate and geographical region, a variety of pests can thrive there. One such pest is the bed bug. Many major American metropolitan cities have troubles with bed bugs and Washington D.C. is ranked No. 3 on Orkin’s 2016 list of Top Bed Bug Cities, behind Chicago and Los Angeles. These tiny pests can be found in hotels, gyms, schools, apartments, homes, nursing homes and even hospitals. Their bites can cause serious swelling, redness and itchiness. These brownish pests are about the size of an apple seed and typically hide out in mattresses and furniture. Residents and travelers can help prevent the spread of bed bugs by keeping all living spaces clean and tidy and by elevating luggage and washing all linens on the hottest setting upon returning home. The D.C. Department of Health has taken action to help reduce the spread of bed bugs by educating residents about treatment as well as precautionary measures.
In addition to bed bugs, pests like rodents thrive in the D.C. area. These pests are known carriers of disease and can cause serious illness. To help address the issue, the D.C. Department of Health has created a centralized program that defines enforcement for rodent control and prevention in the area. These pests can be difficult to treat, so pest management experts urge residents to contact a licensed pest control company if an infestation is suspected.