How Do Bed Bugs Look On Your Body


In this Article

In this Article

In this Article

Bedbugs are small, oval, brownish insects that live on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bedbugs have flat bodies about the size of an apple seed. After feeding, however, their bodies swell and are a reddish color.

Bedbugs do not fly, but they can move quickly over floors, walls, and ceilings. Female bedbugs may lay hundreds of eggs, each of which is about the size of a speck of dust, over a lifetime.

Immature bedbugs, called nymphs, shed their skins five times before reaching maturity and require a meal of blood before each shedding. Under favorable conditions the bugs can develop fully in as little as a month and produce three or more generations per year.

Although they are a nuisance, they are not thought to transmit diseases.

Where Bed Bugs Hide

Bedbugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, used beds and couches, and other items. Their flattened bodies make it possible for them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees, but tend to live in groups in hiding places. Their initial hiding places are typically in mattresses, box springs, bed frames, and headboards where they have easy access to people to bite in the night.

Over time, however, they may scatter through the bedroom, moving into any crevice or protected location. They may also spread to nearby rooms or apartments.

Because bedbugs live solely on blood, having them in your home is not a sign of dirtiness. You are as likely to find them in immaculate homes and hotel rooms as in filthy ones.

When Bedbugs Bite

Bedbugs are active mainly at night and usually bite people while they are sleeping. They feed by piercing the skin and withdrawing blood through an elongated beak. The bugs feed from three to 10 minutes to become engorged and then crawl away unnoticed.

Most bedbug bites are painless at first, but later turn into itchy welts. Unlike flea bites that are mainly around the ankles, bedbug bites are on any area of skin exposed while sleeping. Also, the bites do not have a red spot in the center like flea bites do.

People who don’t realize they have a bedbug infestation may attribute the itching and welts to other causes, such as mosquitoes. To confirm bedbug bites, you must find and identify the bugs themselves.


Signs of Infestation

If you wake up with itchy areas you didn’t have when you went to sleep, you may have bedbugs, particularly if you got a used bed or other used furniture around the time the bites started. Other signs that you have bedbugs include:

  • Blood stains on your sheets or pillowcases
  • Dark or rusty spots of bedbug excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed clothes, and walls
  • Bedbug fecal spots, egg shells, or shed skins in areas where bedbugs hide
  • An offensive, musty odor from the bugs’ scent glands

If you suspect an infestation, remove all bedding and check it carefully for signs of the bugs or their excrement. Remove the dust cover over the bottom of the box springs and examine the seams in the wood framing. Peel back the fabric where it is stapled to the wood frame.

Also, check the area around the bed, including inside books, telephones or radios, the edge of the carpet, and even in electrical outlets. Check your closet, because bedbugs can attach to clothing. If you are uncertain about signs of bedbugs, call an exterminator, who will know what to look for.

If you find signs of infestation, begin steps to get rid of the bugs and prevent their return.

Bedbug Treatments

Getting rid of bedbugs begins with cleaning up the places where bedbugs live. This should include the following:

  • Clean bedding, linens, curtains, and clothing in hot water and dry them on the highest dryer setting. Place stuffed animals, shoes, and other items that can’t be washed in the dryer and run on high for 30 minutes.
  • Use a stiff brush to scrub mattress seams to remove bedbugs and their eggs before vacuuming.
  • Vacuum your bed and surrounding area frequently. After vacuuming, immediately place the vacuum cleaner bag in a plastic bag and place in garbage can outdoors.
  • Encase mattress and box springs with a tightly woven, zippered cover to keep bedbugs from entering or escaping. Bedbugs may live up to a year without feeding, so keep the cover on your mattress for at least a year to make sure all bugs in the mattress are dead.
  • Repair cracks in plaster and glue down peeling wallpaper to get rid of places bedbugs can hide.
  • Get rid of clutter around the bed.

If your mattress is infested, you may want to get rid of it and get a new one, but take care to rid the rest of your home of bedbugs or they will infest your new mattress.


Bedbug Extermination

While cleaning up infested areas will be helpful in controlling bedbugs, getting rid of them usually requires chemical treatments. Because treating your bed and bedroom with insecticides can be harmful, it is important to use products that can be used safely in bedrooms. Do not treat mattresses and bedding unless the label specifically says you can use them on bedding.

Generally it is safest and most effective to hire an experienced pest control professional for bedbug extermination.


University of Kentucky College of Agriculture: "Bed Bugs."

Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet: "Bed Bugs."

The New York City Department of Heath and Mental Hygiene: "Stop Bed Bugs Safely."

University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension Lancaster County: "Managing Bed Bugs."

What do Bed Bug Bites Look Like – Bed Bug Bite Pictures

If you are seeing bites everywhere and wondering, what do bed bug bites look like, have a look at the bed bug bite pictures below. They illustrate how bed bug bites look on different parts of the body, making it much easier to identify the bites. Write a comment below if you need help determining if you have been bitten by bed bugs or some other insect. You are also very welcome to submit your own bed bug bite pictures, like many of our other members have already done. Just write a comment and I will get back to you on how to upload images.

If you have bed bug bites, they may or may not look like the ones on the pictures. The bed bug bite pictures are meant as a guidance that should be used to eliminate other common insect bites. Please note that allergic reactions and a few other insect bites can look exactly like bed bug bites, so you shouldn’t make this your only step in identifying the bite. If you aren’t sure, contact your doctor and let him or her look at it. So what do bed bug bites look like? Have a look at the bed bug bite pictures below and see if they look similar to your own bites. If you have been bitten by bed bugs, then you should start bed bug bite treatment as soon as possible.

Bed bug bite pictures

Bed bug bites are often found on the back, as this is the largest area of the body. These images illustrate what bed bug bites on the back may look like.

They can also be found on the arms, and as you can see, they appear in a variety of forms and sizes.

When the bed bugs have reached the arms, there is no reason why they shouldn’t continue to the hands. This is what that looks like:

Even your face is at risk when you sleep. So what do bed bug bites look like on the face? These pictures show two unlucky people who have been bitten on the chin.

The next couple of bed bug bite pictures show how the bites look up close. Remember that your bed bug bites may look different than the ones on these images, these are just examples.

What do bed bug bites look like on you?

I hope you have found these bed bug bite pictures useful and that your question, “What do bed bug bites look like”, has been answered. Next, read my article on how to get rid of bed bug bites.

Related Posts

  • Bed Bug Bite Treatment – How to Get Rid of Bed Bug Bites Many insect bites have different effects, depending on who is…
  • Bed Bug Bites on Humans – Bed Bug Bite Symptoms The adage: ”Don’t let the bed bugs bite” holds true…
  • What do Bed Bugs Look Like – Bed Bug Pictures Before you can get rid of your bug problem, you…

Got bed bugs?Here are 10 products that can help you get rid of and prevent them.

How to Detect Bed Bugs

Detecting bed bugs can be difficult, as they are small in size and able to hide in tiny cracks and crevices. However, evidence of a bed bug infestation may be found in bedding and on mattresses. Live bed bugs leave clusters of dark brown or black spots of dried excrement on infested surfaces. Bed bugs also exude a subtle, sweet, musty odor.

Bed Bug Cluster

Where to Check for Bed Bugs

Bed bugs usually are found close to where people spend much of their time, and since bed bugs have flattened bodies, they like to get into small cracks and crevice near where people sleep. Examples include mattresses, box springs, headboards, footboards, bed frames and other furniture that is within 5-8 feet of the bed. Other common locations are cracks and gaps behind wall outlets, floor molding, window and door molding and where carpet edges meet the wall. Bed bugs have been known to occur in many different locations if their population is large and they have dispersed from their more common areas to areas where they are normally less likely to be found.

Bed bugs are easily transported into previously non-infested dwellings.

If you have detected a bed bug infestation within your home, contact a pest control professional to discuss treatment options.

Bed Bug Control

Cimex lectularius L.

Learn what bed bugs look like, and how to detect if you have a bed bug Infestation.

Find out how bed bugs infiltrate your home and where they are attracted to.

Learn about bed bug bites. their feces and how they can impact your health.

Learn how Orkin handles bed bugs, homeopathic cures and the cost of bed bug extermination services.

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like (And How To Get Rid of Them Faster)

It can be difficult to identify bed bug bites because the red itchy bumps caused by bed bug bites look like flea bites or mosquito bites. Bed bugs usually come out at night and feed on the blood of humans. The tiny nasty pests can leave a cluster of bite marks on your face, arms, stomach, and legs. Some people only have a mild reaction to the bed bug bites and may only have a few small red dots. However, others have more severe reactions and are plagued by large red bite marks and an irresistible urge to scratch them.

Pictures of bed bug bites show groups of red bite marks on the body. Very often, the bite marks left by bed bugs are in straight lines or in a zig-zag and very rarely is there just one solitary red bite mark.

There are many effective natural home remedies to quickly get rid of the signs of bed bug bites. You can make your own natural treatments for insect bites with ingredients like witch hazel, apple cider vinegar, and aloe vera. The natural anti-inflammatory ingredients in those home remedies help to quickly relieve itching and promote healing.

In this article, you will learn how to identify bed bug bites and find out how to get rid of them quickly. You will also see images of bed bug bites to help you to spot the tell-tale signs that you have been bitten.

What do Bed Bugs Look Like?

The Latin name for bed bugs isCimex lectularius, or common bed bug. If you’ve ever seen a close-up picture of a bed bug you will see that they look quite scary. However, in reality, bed bugs are tiny pests that lurk in corners and crevices of beds, mattresses, and furniture. They are about the size of a small apple seed and many can be seen crawling around if you have an infestation.

Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that bed bugs have flat, brown, oval bodies. They don’t have wings but can quickly scurry over floors, ceilings, and walls. The parasitic insects live in groups and love to hide in dark places. If you have a bed bug problem in your home, you should check for signs of bed bugs in corners of your bed frame, along the seams of mattresses, along baseboards, and behind pictures. In fact, they will live in any crevice that is large enough to slide a credit card into. 1

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports that bed bug eggs look like tiny white pinheads. As they go through their nymph stages they shed skins and these yellowish shells are a common sign to look for when checking for an infestation of bugs. 2

Pictures of bed bugs

How to Identify Bed Bug Bites

On most people, bed bug bites look like itchy red bumps on their body. However, it can be difficult to know if the bite marks have been caused by bed bugs or not.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the symptoms of bed bug bites may not appear for a few days. Also, each person reacts differently to being bitten by these irritating pests. Some people show no signs of being bitten whereas other people have a severe reaction to the bite, and large bumps appear on the skin that itch severely. 3

However, Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that the only way to know for sure if the red bite marks have been caused by bed bugs is to look for signs of a bug infestation. That will confirm if the red spots that look like bed bug bites are in fact the result of bed bugs.

Bed Bug Bites – Signs and Symptoms

Images of bed bug bites generally show clusters of itchy red bumps on a person’s arms, neck, face, legs, and other areas of their body. Depending on the number of bed bugs that have infested your sleeping area and your reaction to them, bed bug bites also have other signs.

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that more often than not, bed bug bites will be in either a rough line or in a cluster of red marks. If they cause a severe skin reaction, the itching can be very intense. In rare cases, a person who has many bites and a severe allergic reaction should visit a doctor. 4

Doctors from the National Health Service say that, in some cases, the itchy red bumps on the skin can cause a rash or start to blister and fill with fluid. 5

However, it can be difficult to tell if the bites have been caused by bed bugs or another insect. Therefore, it’s important to know how to identify the difference between bed bug bites, flea bites and mosquito bites.

Bed bug bite vs flea bite

Flea bites and bed bug bites look very similar and cause itchy red marks on the skin. Even in pictures, it is hard to tell bed bug bites and flea bites apart. However, there are some differences.

The symptoms of flea bites generally appear on the ankles, feet and around the abdomen. As with bed bug bites, flea bite symptoms can also appear in small clusters. Dr. Carol DerSarkissian says that if you look closely at a bed bug bite you won’t see a small red dot in the middle as is characteristic of flea bites. 1

Bed bug bite vs mosquito bite

Both mosquito bites and bed bug bites can leave itchy welts on the skin. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that the symptoms of mosquito bites show up very soon after the bite; in fact, in only a few minutes, a puffy red bump usually appears. 6

Unlike bed bug bites that are painless, you may feel the mosquito bite and it might start to itch immediately. It is also more likely that the mosquito bite will blister and ooze a small amount of fluid.

Symptoms of Bed Bug Bites – Complications

Bed bug bite marks usually heal within 2 weeks and won’t leave any permanent mark on the skin. In some cases, there are complications associated with bed bug bites.

Of course, for many people, the appearance of red itchy welts on visible areas of skin like their face or arms is an unwanted complication of bed bug bites.

One of the most common, and potentially serious, complications that is seen with bed bug bite is a secondary skin infection. Dr. Stephanie S. Gardner on WebMD says that itching from bed bug bites can be so severe that constant scratching breaks the skin and germs get it. This can cause a bacterial infection in the bite mark. 7

Dr. Steven Doerr on eMedicnineHealth warns that some people experience severe allergic reactions to bed bug bites. Some of the signs of a serious allergic reaction include itching all over the body, tightness in the throat, chest pain, red bed bug rash that spreads from the bite area. 8

At least the good news with bed bug bites is that they don’t spread disease. The CDC states that bed bugs don’t spread disease and the most serious health threat is a lack of sleep from scratching and secondary skin infections. 3

Signs of Bed Bug Infestation

If you suspect that clusters of itchy red spots on your body are the result of pesky bed bugs, you should check for signs of an infestation.

First, you don’t have to worry that having bed bugs is a sign of uncleanliness or dirtiness. The CDC says that bed bugs only feed on blood and aren’t attracted to dirt. Bed bugs have been found in the cleanest of 5-star hotels. 3

To check for signs of bed bugs, you should look in areas where they tend to live. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that tell-tale signs of bed bug activity are tiny rusty-colored stains on bed linen from bug feces or dried blood. You may also notice tiny yellow shed skins around your bed and sleeping area. 9

The next step to confirm if itchy red marks on your skin are from bed bugs is to find where the critters are hiding. You should check all joints and screw holes in your bed frame, around mattresses and box springs, and around the headboard. Other places where you might find evidence of a bed bug infestation are in the folds of drapes, in drawer joints, behind loose wallpaper, and at baseboards.

If you find feces, dead bed bugs, or bed bugs crawling around, it is time to take drastic action to get rid of the bed bugs quickly. This is the only way to prevent getting more bed bug bites in the future. Some effective ways to kill off infestation of irritating insects include using bed bug powders that destroy populations of bed bugs as well as bed bug sprays.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bug Bites Fast

Fortunately, there are many great home remedies to get rid of bed bug bites quickly. Here are a few of the best ways of treating bed bug bites at home.

Cold compress

To quickly get rid of an intense itch in a swollen bump caused by a bed bug bite, you can use a cold compress. One excellent way to make a compress is by using a cold tea bag. Cold helps to relieve irritation from your skin by calming nerve endings, and tea helps to relieve itching and promotes healing.

A study from 2012 into the healing effects of tea found that compounds in black and green tea have an astringent effect. This helps to reduce itching in irritated, inflamed skin. 9 However, you don’t just have to use black or green tea bags. Research has also found that chamomile has soothing properties and is just as effective as hydrocortisone creams (often prescribed by doctors to reduce itching in insect bites). 10

How to use:

To quickly get rid of the irritation that bed bug bites cause using a cold tea compress, this is what you should do:

  1. Put a tea bag in a cup of boiling water for a few minutes. Remove the bag and cool it in the refrigerator.
  2. Place the tea bag on the red itchy bumps to relieve discomfort and irritation.
  3. Apply the cold compress 2-3 times a day for fast relief from bed bug bites and bed bug rash.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera also has properties that reduce itching and help to speed up the healing time of a bed bug bite. Aloe vera contains many properties to nourish your skin and relieve inflammation and irritation.

One study into the healing properties of aloe vera found that it has a soothing effect on irritated skin. It was found that aloe vera was just as effective as hydrocortisone creams in reducing itching and inflammatory responses in the skin. 11

How to use:

Aloe vera gel is great for helping bed bug bites to heal faster. This is what you should do:

  1. Use aloe vera gel with as few added ingredients as possible and liberally apply some gel to the bite marks.
  2. Massage the gel into the area around the bed bug bites to soothe the skin and stop itching.
  3. Apply the natural remedy 2-3 times a day to help your skin heal quicker and get welcome relief from the constant itching.

Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil will help to treat the itch in bed bug bites and help prevent secondary infections making the skin worse. Tea tree oil contains powerful antimicrobial compounds as well as properties that help to reduce inflammation and itching.

One of the benefits of using tea tree oil to quickly treat bed bug bites is that it helps soothe allergic skin reactions. For example, theBritish Journal of Dermatologyreported on a study into the antihistamine effect of tea tree oil. Histamine is released by the body as a response to allergens. It was found that applying tea tree oil to skin inflammation helped to soothe the allergic response fast. 12

How to use:

You can use tea tree oil as a spot treatment on one or two bed bug bites or you can mix a couple of drops of tea tree oil with coconut oil to apply to clusters of bed bug bites. This is what you should do:

  1. Put a drop of tea tree oil on the end of a cotton bud and apply to the itchy bed bug bite.
  2. Apply 2 times a day to help stop itching in the bite marks and prevent bacterial infections affecting the skin area.

For large clusters of bed bug bites, you can get relief by adding 2-3 drops of tea tree oil to a tablespoon of coconut oil. Apply 2-3 times a day to help your skin heal and treat any bed bug bite blisters that have formed.

You can also use tea tree oil to make a natural spray for bed bug eradication.

Other ways to get rid of bed bug bites quickly

There are many other natural ways to get rid of the visible signs of bed bug bites. Here are some more ways.

Witch hazelis a natural astringent that quickly soothes itchy skin and reduces redness. Witch hazel is perfect for treating bed bug bites and can be applied whenever your bite marks start itching.

Apple cider vinegar, when it is diluted with water in equal proportions, helps to reduce itching and kill germs in bed bug bites. Just apply diluted apple cider vinegar to the affected area to stop itching fast.

Cucumbershave an amazing soothing effect on the skin and will give you instant relief from itching and irritation. All you have to do is apply slices of cool cucumber to your bite marks.

For more information on these natural bed bug bite remedies and to find out some more effective ways to treat bed bug bite signs at home, please read my article on natural ways to make bed bug bites heal faster.

How to Prevent Bed Bug Bites

Of course, preventing an infestation of bed bugs is much easier than having to deal with the discomfort bed bug bites cause.

The CDC says that one of the best ways to prevent bed bug bites is to regularly check your bed, mattress, and bed linen for signs of bed bug activity. This can help you get rid of bed bugs before they become a major problem. 3

Also, you should be careful of buying second-hand furniture. The National Health Services warns to avoid buying second-hand mattresses and if you do buy used furniture, carefully inspect it for bed bugs. 5 Remember, that in the right conditions, bed bugs can live for many months without feeding!

Read my other related articles:

Article Sources

  1. WebMD. Bedbugs.
  2. EPA. Bed bug appearance and life cycle.
  3. CDC. Bed bugs FAQs
  4. MayoClinic. Bedbug symptoms.
  5. NHS. Bedbugs.
  6. MayoClinic. Mosquito bites.
  7. WebMD. Pictures of bed bug bites.
  8. eMedicineHealth. Bedbugs.
  9. EPA. How to find bed bugs.
  10. Phytojournal. Tannins are astringent.
  11. OWM. 2011;57(5):28-36.
  12. Skin Pharmacol Physiol.2008;21(2):106-10.
  13. Br J Dermatol.2002 Dec;147(6):1212-7.

Can you See Bed Bugs? Pictures, Size, Color, Shells, Feces & Anatomy

Following the increased cases of bed bug infestations, you need to clearly understand how bed bugs look like so that it is easy to spot them. This article critically examines the size of bed bugs, their color and their general anatomy.

Can you see bed bugs with the naked human eye? What do they look like?

Bed bugs are tiny but you can see them with your naked eyes. This however depends on what stage of the life cycle the bed bug is at.

Adult bed bugs are wingless, oval, they have a flat body and they are rusty red in color. All these features make it very visible and you hence do not have to strain to see the bugs with your naked eye.

Nymphs or rather baby bed bugs are quite invisible and may not be easy to identify using the naked eye. The baby bed bugs are not only very tiny but they are also translucent.

They are also described as being colorless and hence they cannot be seen not unless you are extremely keen or use some light or a magnifying object.

Due to the noted difficulty in seeing the nymphs with your naked eye, there are tools that have been improvised to aid in detecting these bed bugs.

It is important to know how you can easily spot the baby bed bugs when doing a thorough search in your house for presence of bed bugs. Below are the tools you may find very useful;

A flashlight

Whether adults or nymphs, bed bugs can sometimes be hard to find if you are using your naked eyes. A flashlight is very useful in finding out whether there are bed bugs hiding in cracks and crevices in your house, or other hard to see places. You are advised to use a very bright flashlight, probably, one with fresh batteries.

A magnifying glass

A magnifying glass gives you a closer view of the bed bugs. It makes the very small bed bugs appear way bigger making it easy for you to see the bed bugs.

Ensure you get a very large magnifying glass so that you can cover a large area by a single glance. A large magnifying glass makes close-up examinations easier especially for newly hatched bed bugs.[1]

Bed Bug Size-How Big are they?

Bed bugs are very tiny insects and that is why they are able to hide almost everywhere. Below is a discussion on the bed bug actual size as well as factors that determining the size of the bed bugs.

Bed Bug Actual size

A bed bug’s size depends on what stage of its life cycle it is in. An adult bed bug that has not yet fed has a size of approximately 3/16’’. When the bed bug feeds, it swells and there is a noticeable increase in its size. The growth in length of the bed bug after feeding increases to approximately 1/5’’.

Why Big & Small Bed Bugs

Some bed bugs are bigger than others. As mentioned above, a bed bug that has fed is bigger than one that has not fed yet.

Bed bugs that can reach a blood meal often will appear more swollen than those that are starved. That aside, bed bugs that are on their early life stages appear smaller than adult bed bugs.

What factors will determine the size of a bed bug

Stage in its life cycle

A bed bug develops from the egg to four stages as a nymph before it is an adult. During its life cycle, it keeps increasing in size as you move from one stage to another.

This is to mean that a nymph is smaller than an adult bed bug. A nymph could be as small as 1.5mm. The nymph biggest size is about4 to 5mm.

Feeding habits

A bed bug that has fed is bigger than one that is starving. The more a bed bug feeds, the bigger it is and the more visible it is.

What color are bed bugs

Immature bed bugs, commonly referred to as nymph, are translucent, that is, they are almost colorless. When they first hatch, the bed bugs are colorless but they become brown as they grow. Adult but unfed bed bugs have a rusty brown color.

Adult bed bugs that have fed on a blood meal appear to be red brown in color. The additional red color after the mature bed bug feeds can be explained by the color of your blood.

The color of the bed bugs determines how visible they are. When immature, the bed bugs are less visible since they are translucent. An adult bed bug that has had a blood meal is more visible than one that has not fed.

There are several factors that determine the color of the bed bugs. Some of them are discussed below;


Bed bugs that have fed are more visible than those that have not fed. As sated above, a bed bug that has had a blood meal will have an extremely visible color which is red-brown as opposed to the unfed bed bug which is just brown in color.

Stage in life cycle

An immature bed bug is almost colorless meaning you can hardly see it. A bed bug is however very visible once it is an adult since it acquires a brown color which you can easily see with your naked eye.

Anatomy-how many legs do bed bugs have?

Bed bug legs

Bed bugs have six legs which they use for crawling. For each minute, bed bugs can crawl for 4 feet. The bed bug uses its claws to grip rough surfaces and getting hold of the host when feeding. The bed bug’s legs however do not allow them to climb smooth surfaces since they do not have suction pads.

Other parts of the body

Generally, bed bugs have 3 segments on its body. These are the head, thorax and abdomen. Discussed below are other parts of the bed bug apart from the legs;


This is a small tube under the mouth of the bed bug. It elongates at the time the bed bug wishes to feed.

It is this tube that injects the anti-coagulating saliva so that you do not experience any pain as it withdraws blood from your skin or the skin of your pet.

The University of Kentucky explains that, using the proboscis, bed bugs draw approximately 0.0055milliliters of blood for each bite.


A bed bug has antennae on its upper part of the body. The antennae are usually two. There are four segments on each antenna. These antennae are half as long as the body of the bed bug.

It is the antennae that guide the bed bugs to their hosts. They act as sensors.

Bed bugs have two compound eyes. For this type of eyes, a single eye has ommatidia which refer to many repeating units. This explains why the bed bug’s eyes are very sensitive to any movement.

The head of a bed bug is broad. It is attached to the thorax.


Below the head of the bed bug is the thorax. The thorax is the part of the body in which the legs of the bed bug are attached. This enables the bed bug to make movement.


This part of the bed bug’s body has eleven segments. The segments expand easily and this allows the bed bug to fill up with blood when it feeds.

his flexibility also allows it to plump up. While the male bed bug has a pointed tip abdomen, the female bed bug has a rounded tip abdomen.

What does bed bug poop/Feces/Droppings look like?

Among the common signs that bed bugs leave signs are their droppings. Bed bug poop is used as one of the signs in identifying presence of bed bugs. For this to be successful, you will need to know how exactly bed bug droppings look like.

Bed bugs feed on a blood meal and so, after bed bugs bite you, they later leave behind droppings which constitute of digested blood.

Bed bugs will leave these droppings in form of tarry tiny spots on your bed or even clothes and furniture. Once the droppings dry up, they are no longer the color of blood but rather, they turn black. The normal color of bed bug feces is hence either dark red or black.

The droppings are also found to have rust color in the case where they do not turn black. The droppings are the size of a dot from a marker pen. Bed bug droppings can be found anywhere in your house.

Since the bed bug droppings may sometimes resemble the droppings from other insects, you are asked to use the droppings together with other signs such as bed bug eggs to determine whether or not your house is infested.[2]

Are bed bug feces hard or soft?

Bed bug feces are not hard. Most people report that the droppings feel soft and when touched, they are likely to smear. These droppings are sticky to some degree. However, the consistency of bed bug feces may vary.

Bed Bug Shells, Cast Skin & Exoskeleton

Do bed bugs shed their skin?

Bed bugs shed their external skin or rather exoskeleton. All through the bed bug life cycle, bed bugs molt. Molting refers to shedding of the bed bug skin. Shedding of the bed bug skin from infancy to adulthood involves five phases of shedding the bed bug skin.

Baby bed bugs or nymphs; shed their skin as they approach adulthood. The nymphs shed their external skin severally before getting to their mature age.

In fact, the number of estimated times that bed bugs shed their shells is five times. For every fresh growth level, the bed bugs will shed their skin once.

A bed bug that has newly shed its skin can be noticed since its skin appears new. Such bed bug’s skin resembles that of a brighter colored bed bug shell or skin.

Once you find bed bug shells in your house, you need to get worried. It is an indicator that the house is heavily infested and the bed bugs may have been in your house for some time now.

The process of bed bugs shedding their skin is referred to as molting as mentioned above but others refer to the process as ecdysis. Under ideal conditions, it takes a week for a bed bug to complete a certain stage in their life cycle.

However, this is determined by a number of factors such as temperature and how easily and often the bed bug accesses a blood meal.

The bed bug skin is commonly found under your carpet or on its edges, in your telephone, your radio, in your books, in the box spring, and around wood framing.

When looking for bed bug shells, however, ensure you check every part of your house and not just the mentioned places.

What do bed bug shells look like

Just like bed bug droppings, bed bug shells are used as a sign that shows a possibility of bed bug infestation in your home. It is therefore prudent to know how they look like.

Bed bug shells appear as clear exoskeletons which are empty. Bed bug shed skin is found in clusters and since the shells do not decompose at the same time, they may start to build up.

The skin that bed bugs shed resembles a live bed bug and the two are at times confused. The shed skin looks like the bed bug’s full suit that has been taken off. Nevertheless, there are distinct differences such as; the skin is empty and translucent.

Another obvious difference is that while a live bed bug moves, the skin that looks like a bed bug does not move.

These differences are very important so that you do not confuse a live bed bug for its skin. Always look keenly to ensure you know when it is a live bed bug and when it is its ‘full suit’.

Where an infestation is new, there will be few traces of shed skin unlike the case of an old infestation where there may be plenty of the bed bug shells.

A new infestation has fewer shells since adult bed bugs don’t molt. It is only after the female bed bugs lay eggs and they hatch that you will start seeing an increase in number of shells. This is because the bigger population will now constitute nymphs.[3]

Add Comments: