Bed Bugs – How to Identify and Interesting Facts
Those who have been through a bed bug infestation will without a doubt never want to go through one again. Bed bugs are up there in the worst nuisance pests. They are difficult to eliminate and deal a lot of irritation once you get bitten. To start, here are some facts about bed bugs you may have not heard of before.
Interesting Bed Bug Facts
1. They Feed on Blood
A bed bug’s diet primarily consists of blood. They mostly feed on human blood but may also feed off the blood of other warm-blooded animals like dogs and cats. Their body size can grow up by 50% in length and up by 200% in weight after a proper meal.
2. Bed Bugs May Have Color Preferences
There might be a good reason to why bed bugs like to feed off human blood. According to researchers from the University of Florida and Union College in Lincoln, bed bugs show a strong preference to red and black and don’t like colors such as yellow and green. The suggested reason for this is due to the fact that bed bugs may like to exist in groups so they will go towards colors that closely resemble their own.
3. Bed Bugs Have a Strong Will to Live
Bed bugs can live without a meal for quite some time. There is some debate on what exact duration a bed bug can live for without a blood meal but it could potentially be anywhere from a few months to a year. How long they live will depend on a number of circumstances such as the temperature of the room they are in. Unfortunately, their ability to do this is not good news for us. In fact, it highlights why eliminating bed bugs is never a fast job.
4. Bed Bugs May Lay One Egg a Day
Bed bugs have the ability to lay hundreds of eggs throughout their entire lifespan. This is bad news for people affected by bed bug infestations. Lots of people figure they have won the bed bug battle once they have gotten rid of all the adult bugs but that’s where the mistake typically happens. An infestation is never over until the eggs and nymphs are also dealt with. Unfortunately, the eggs are even harder to detect given their tiny size so it’s absolutely important to steam and vacuum the whole house until you are truly in the all clear.
How to Identify Bed Bugs
Bed bugs unfortunately aren’t the only blood-sucking insects to affect humans. There are few other house-dwelling insects that could be mistaken for bed bugs. These include insects like spider beetles, fleas, and cockroach nymphs. Here are some tips that may help you identify a bed bug more easily.
Body Shape and Color
Adult bed bugs are typically brown in color although they could also have a more reddish-brown appearance after a meal. Their body shape is oval and fairly flat (prior to a meal). They almost resemble an apple seed.
Bed Bug Lifecycle
There are three key life stages for bed bugs: the egg, nymph, and adulthood. Bed bug eggs are usually white in color and no more than 1 mm long. Bed bug nymphs typically have a translucent or white-yellowish body color. Unfortunately, both are had to make out even to the naked eye.
Common Bed Bug Signs
There are some common signs that could help indicate a bed bug infestation such as rusty stains on bedsheets and dark spots along the mattress. The dark spots are the bed bug excrements and may bleed onto the bedding fabric (much like a marker would).