What do Bed Bugs do? Well if you bring them home with you, bedbugs can make your life miserable.
Cimex lectularius (bed-bugs) infestations have been on the rise throughout the world. The United States alone has seen a 20% rise in 2013 in reported bed bug infestations. (according to Orkin Pest Control.)
Bed-bugs can hitch a ride on luggage, or clothing left on infested beds, or other materials that may have been sitting in an infested area. They are more than happy to let you bring them home with you. What do bed bugs do to create an infestation? Often times the female bed bug will be pregnant (she can store the male sperm) and can travel to a new area and produce eggs very rapidly. Any college dorm, or hotel room, or Cruise Ship, or hostel bed, or rental you stayed at could have been infested with bedbugs.
What do bed bugs do that you should be worried about? Mostly, they will hide during the daytime and come out at night in search of a blood meal. They are attracted to the carbon dioxide and warmth and they prefer human hosts. While the majority of the time they will feed at night, they are opportunistic feeders who will take a close by easy meal in the daytime if populations are high enough.
What do bed bugs do that will let you know if they are present? They can bite and will often times leave marks. Bed Bug bites can also become infected especially if scratched aggressively. Bedbugs will also leave dark droppings or rusty brownish marks on the bedding or areas they are feeding and infesting. As a bed-bug progresses from nymph to adult, it must take a blood meal 5x in the process. They will shed their exoskeletons after each blood meal, so you will likely see those too in a good sized infestation. You should always bring a small flashlight with you to check your room before you sleep in it or store your luggage in that room. Here is a very cool new idea for heated luggage to help try and minimize bed bug movement from hotel to home.
Bed bugs will stay close to their food. They will normally feed within 10 feet or less of where they try and hide. What do bed bugs do to eat? They will inject an anticoagulant that also has a numbing agent so that the victim does not feel the feeding. The anticoagulant will make it easier to draw blood and some people are said to have an allergic reaction to the chemicals that the bed-bug injects.
The answer to what do bed bugs do…is that they cause a lot of problems for people and travelers world wide. Unfortunately with the way the numbers are increasing, it will likely continue to get worse. You may want to read Bed Bug Battle Plan by Garrett Thrasher. Its has some tips and pointers on how to help manage and avoid bed bug problems.