Bed bugs (sometimes called “bedbugs”) are small insects that live on human blood. They are excellent at “hitchhiking” on people and their immediate possessions to get from one place to another. Bed bugs have increased dramatically in population over the past few decades and are now a significant pest in many parts of the United States and most other countries.

Physical Description & Life Cycle

There are 3 stages to bed bug development:

  • Egg: eggs are small, pale spheres about 1mm in diameter. (This is about the same size as a mustard seed.) The average female lays hundreds of eggs during her lifetime, in small groups of between 1-50.
  • Nymph: Nymphs are immature bed bugs. There are 5 different stages of nymphs. Nymphs require a blood meal for each stage, after which they shed their skin and move to the next larger stage. The amount of time spent as a nymph varies according to factors like availability of food and climate. A bed bug can grow from an egg to an adult in as little as 4 to 5 weeks.
  • Adult: Adult bed bugs are a dark red or mahogany color with no wings. They have a flattened shape that allows them to hide very well in tight spaces. Adults tend to be located within 1 or 2 meters of their food supply, so they are often found in and around beds. They can live up to around a year, and can survive many months without food.

History

Bed bugs are thought to have originally lived in dark environments like caves and preyed on bats and other small animals. (There is actually a separate type of bed bug today that still prefers to prey on bats.) Humans have been dealing with bed bugs for thousands of years. In fact, an Egyptian tomb that was over 3000 years old was found to have preserved bed bugs in it along with the remains of a wealthy ancient Egyptian. The frequent travel that is part of modern life has helped bed bugs spread throughout most of the world.

Pest Behavior

Bed bugs spread easily by “hitching” a ride on a person or their immediate belongings. It’s possible to pick up bed bugs in all kinds of everyday locations, from public transportation like a bus or taxi, to food or entertainment businesses like restaurants and movie theaters, to hotels and motels, or even simply visiting a friend’s home.

Once bed bugs are in your home they can quickly reproduce and turn into a real infestation if left unchecked. An infestation can include hundreds of bed bugs in a single room and result in anyone sleeping in that room being bitten hundreds of times a night!

What proof. Professionals Do To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs

If you suspect you have bed bugs in your home, it is important to contact a professional pest control company right away before you’re dealing with a full-blown infestation. Our Residential Bed Bug Service provides fast, effective relief from these biting pests with a proven, 2-treatment process. 

 

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