What beg bugs look like
Bed bugs are human parasites that feed exclusively on blood. They are small, wingless, six-legged biting insects with an oval and somewhat flattened body. They are mahogany to rusty- or reddish-brown, and their body swells up once it is full of blood. They also have microscopic hairs that give them a slightly streaked appearance. Bed bugs can be seen with the naked eye since, once they reach adulthood, they are about the same size as an apple seed (up to 10 mm, or about ¼ inch).

What they eat
Bed bugs feed on blood by inserting two hollow beak-shaped feeding tubes into its host. The first tube injects anesthetic saliva to numb the feeding area, and the second tube draws blood. It takes a bed bug about five to ten minutes to feed before it goes to an isolated spot and hides for five to ten days. During this time, it doesn’t feed but digests its meal, mates and lays eggs.

Their lifecycle
The biology of bed bugs naturally encourages infestation. The female lays between one and five eggs per day, for an average of 540 eggs in her lifetime. These eggs are white, the size as a pinhead, arranged in clusters, and attached to small nooks such as cracks, crevices or rough surfaces. Bed bugs take six to 17 days to hatch. Nymphs are almost colourless and turn brown as they age. The insects reach full maturity in about 21 days after five stages of development. A bed bug moults once with each stage of development. Adults live five to six months but can survive more than a year in a dormant state without nourishment if the temperature drops below 13-15°C.

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