By CBS3 Staff


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It’s called the “kissing bug.” It’s a blood-sucking insect that attacks humans, often biting them in the face. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials say they have documented the very first case in Delaware.

They say a young girl was watching TV in the bedroom of her Kent County home last summer when the bug bit her.

The bugs are often seen in Central and South America and can carry a parasite that causes “chagas disease.” The disease can cause serious cardiac and gastrointestinal complications, according to the CDC.

Fortunately, the child never got sick.

Dr. John Cambridge, CEO at the Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion, joined CBS3 at 4 Tuesday to discuss the bug. Cambridge says the bug is not native to Delaware, but may have arrived in the area in someone’s luggage.

“If you’re traveling anywhere these things are found, you just might want to watch your luggage,” Cambridge said. “Sometimes they’re in close proximity to people’s apartment, hotels, things like that. So just kind of shake your luggage off, don’t leave it open.”

The CDC recommends the following to prevent an infestation: remove trash, wood, and rock piles from around the home, clear out any bird and animal nests from around the home, keep outdoor lights away from homes, dog kennels, and chicken coops, and inspect and seal any cracks or gaps in your home.