BBC Home
Explore the BBC



Last Updated: Tuesday September 21 2010 06:06 GMT

Bed bug outbreak shuts Nike store in New York

Bed bugs

The tiny creatures causing big problems in New York

An outbreak of bed bugs in America has caused one of New York's most famous shops to close.

Nike's shop on Fifth Avenue, New York's busiest shopping street, has closed because there are bed bugs crawling about in the clothes on sale!

Bed bugs are small insects that bite people and can cause itchy scabs to form on the skin.

They like warm places and New York has been battling a bed bug infestation for months.

Bedbug Facts
Bedbugs in a jar
They measure about 5mm
They leave really itchy marks on your skin
They don't spread diseases

Nike said they expected the shop to reopen soon, and that they were trying to protect their customers from the bugs.

Researchers in America have found that bed bug infestations are increasing.

Some experts think the creatures may spread by hitching a lift on tourists travelling from country to country.

There are also worries that the bugs may be resistant to the chemicals traditionally used to kill them.

Bed bugs live around mattress seams and in bed frames and furniture. The bugs can survive for up to a year without eating any blood, which means they are really hard to get rid of.