Fast facts on bed bugs - key points

Here are some key points about bed bugs.

  • Bed bugs, known scientifically as Cimex lectularius (Cimicidae) are small wingless insects that feed by hematophagy - exclusively on the blood of warm blooded-animals.
  • As we are warm-blooded animals, we are ideal hosts for bed bugs.
  • They are called bed bugs because of their preferred habitat in human homes: sofas, bed mattress and other soft furnishings.
  • Most bed bugs feed on their hosts while they are asleep. The host supplies them with blood in a painless way, never knowing it is happening.
  • The most active time for a bed bug is about one hour before sunrise - the peak time for feeding.
  • Feeding takes about five minutes, after which the bug returns to its hiding place.
  • A female bed bug lays approximately 5 eggs in one day and about 500 during her lifetime.
  • Bites can sometimes take up to nine days to become visible. Unlike flea bites, bed bug bites do not usually have a red dot in the center.
  • Bed bugs, like fleas, tend to bite in rows. There are likely to be two or three bites all in a row.
  • Since they can hide in so many places, they are not easy to eradicate. Unless you have a lot of time at your disposal, and limitless patience, it is advisable to get a professional in pest control

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