Ladybug Bed BugsBed Bugs

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Bed Bug SizeThe common bed bug (Cimex lectularius) has long been a pest – feeding on blood, causing itchy bites and generally irritating their human hosts. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) all consider bed bugs a public health pest.

Adult bed bugs, in general, are:

  • about the size of an apple seed (5-7 mm or 3/16 - 1/4 inch long)
    long and brown, with a flat, oval-shaped body (if not fed recently)
    balloon-like, reddish-brown, and more elongated (if fed recently)
  • a “true bug” (beak with three segments; antenna that have four parts; wings that are not used for flying; and short, golden-colored hairs)
  • smelly, with a “musty-sweetish” odor produced through glands on the lower side of the body.

Young bed bugs (also called nymphs), in general, are:

  • smaller, translucent or whitish-yellow in color; and
  • if not recently fed, can be nearly invisible to the naked eye because of coloring and size.



Bed bug eggs, in general, are:

  • tiny, the size of a pinhead;
  • pearl-white in color; and
  • marked by an eye spot if more than five days old.

Bed Bug Life Cycle

Bed Bug LifeDuring its lifetime, a bed bug will go through the following stages:

  • Eggs (1mm)
  • 1st stage nymph (1.5 mm)
  • 2nd stage nymph (2 mm)
  • 3rd stage nymph (2.5 mm)
  • 4th stage nymph (3 mm)
  • ]5th stage nymph (4.5 mm)
  • Unfed adult female
  • Unfed adult male

Bed Bugs Can Carry MRSA and VRE

Canadian researchers have found bed bugs carrying methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, the potentially deadly superbug known as MRSA. The researchers also found bed bugs with vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium, or VRE, another potentially deadly antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

More information here.