Bedbugs are parasitic insects that feed exclusively on blood. Bed bug derives from the preferred habitat especially near or inside beds and bedding or other sleep areas. Bedbugs are mainly active at night.
Bedbugs feed solely on the blood of people and animals while they sleep. They obtain all the additional moisture they need from water vapor in the surrounding air.
Bedbug infestations usually occur around or near the areas where people sleep. They hide during the day in places such as seams of mattresses, box springs, bed frames, headboards, dresser tables, inside cracks and crevices, behind wallpaper, or any other clutter or objects around a bed.
Bedbugs have been shown to be able to travel over 100 feet in a night but tend to live within 8 feet of where people sleep. They are also capable of climbing up metal railings and headboards and can also climb over glass as well.
Under certain cool conditions adult bed bugs can live for over a year without feeding, under typically warm conditions adults can survive for about five months without food. They can also survive for as long as a year and a half with no oxygen. Their life span is about 10 months, though many of them live longer than 1 year.
It takes about 5-10 minutes for a bed bug to become completely engorged with blood. Fertilized females with enough food lay 3-4 eggs each day continually until the end of their lifespan (about 9 months under warm conditions).
Once a bedbug finishes feeding, it relocates to a place close to a known host, commonly in or near beds or couches in clusters of adults, juveniles and eggs. These are called harborage areas to which the insect returns after future feedings by following chemical trails. These places can vary greatly in format, including luggage, inside of vehicles, within furniture, amongst beside clutter, even inside electrical sockets.
Signs of bedbug infestations: bedbug exoskeletons after molting; bedbugs in the fold of mattresses and sheets; rusty-colored blood spots on mattresses or nearby furniture; a sweet musty odor from the bug’s scent glands.
The best way to prevent bedbugs is regular inspection for the signs of an infestation. Since they come out at night, they are not normally seen. They generally feed when people are sitting calmly or sleeping, and they particularly enjoy feeding at night.
Bedbugs typically hide in: inside drawers; in and under upholstered furniture, such as sofas, chairs and beds; under baseboards, on pajamas or other sleeping clothes, underneath wallpaper; under loose carpet and under rugs; along and inside all parts of a mattress; inside box springs; between curtain folds; inside phones, clocks and stereos; inside cracked plaster; around the casings of doors and windows; behind all wall decorations, including posters and paintings.