How Do Bed Bugs Breed?
June 10, 2020
If there are even the slightest chance bed bugs have entered your home, you’ll need to do something to prevent them from growing in numbers. In order to handle the situation, however, you’ll need to know how they breed, what they look like, what their life cycle is like, and how they usually make it into people’s homes. Here are the answers to all of those questions!
How Do Bed Bugs Breed?
The process of bed bug mating is called traumatic insemination. This process is traumatic for a female, which is why she sometimes isolates herself. That is usually why the female bed bug gets into people’s belongings, such as backpacks or luggage.
What are the life stages of a bed bug?
- A bed bug’s life begins as an egg. Female bed bugs lay between five and twelve eggs each day. The eggs are about the size of a pinhead, milky-white, and resemble a grain of rice. Usually, female bed bugs lay eggs in cracks and crevices, such as those between floorboards and wall baseboards. One individual bug can lay 500 eggs during her lifetime.
- Eggs hatch within seven to seventeen days, depending on room temperature. The newly emerged nymphs are also about 1.5mm long and almost transparent until the first feeding. In this stage of development, they are very difficult to see. Nymphs are yellow or white in color. Before reaching adulthood, immature nymphs molt five times, they shed out their exoskeleton in order to grow.
- In this stage, a bed bug nymph is 2mm long. Bed bugs in this stage also molt and take a blood meal. They are easily recognizable in this phase since they start to get a reddish stain on their back. After the feeding, they become larger and redder.
- During this stage, bed bug nymphs are 3mm long and start to look more like adult bed bugs; now their color is dark yellow with a much bigger, rust-colored stain on the back.
- The final molting of the bug is the final stage of their life cycle. At this stage, they are 4.5–5.5mm long and their coloring is a much darker rust color.
How does a bed bug infestation start?
In most cases, the first bed bug that enters your home is an adult bug. A female bed bug is capable of laying five to seven eggs per week. An infestation from one pregnant female can rise to 5,000-bed bugs in only six months. Their life cycle is fast and they reach adulthood within a month. They pose the biggest threat when you are traveling, but they can also be found in apartment buildings, schools, libraries, and office buildings.
You’ve seen how fast these tiny creatures can reproduce. This is why it’s very important to react on time. If you have any doubts about whether your house is infested, make sure to check the entire place and contact a bed bug control professional to help you eradicate them.