Bed bugs

 

bed bug life cycleAppearance:
Bed bugs are flat, reddish-brown, oval insects about 3/16-inch long or the size of an apple seed. Swollen and reddish after a blood meal.
Habit: Cracks and crevices including mattress seams, sheets, furniture, behind baseboards, electrical outlet plates and picture frames. Often found in hotels, where they can travel from room to room and in visitors' luggage.
Diet: They Feed on blood.
Reproduction: Females can deposit one to five eggs a day, and may lay 200 to 500 eggs in a lifetime. Under normal room temperatures and with an adequate food supply, they can live over 300 days.
Facts: Bed bugs (often misspelled as bedbugs) are small, nocturnal, wingless insects that belong to the family of Cimicidae. They feed on human blood and other warm-blooded hosts. They are oval in shape and grow up to 4-5mm long when fully grown. Their skin color is rust brown to a deeper red brown. Bed bugs are also known as "mahogany flats", "red coats" and "chinches." The adult bed bug does not have any wings and has a flattened body.

They dorsoventrally flattened and thin which creates a great advantage for them. They can hide in unusual places such as behind baseboards, floor cracks, and under carpets or behind loose wallpaper, which makes them difficult to detect. Bed bugs also tend to stay close together and have a distinctively sweet, yet unpleasant smell. Blood spotting on mattresses and nearby furnishings are also signs of a bed bug infestation.
Their bites can leave itchy, welts on the skin and can cause allergic reactions, such as severe itching.

Bed bug anatomy by ADAS
Bed bugs have existed since the ancient times and are found in temperate climates throughout the world. There are different types of bed bugs, but the common bed bug with a scientific name of Cimex lectularius, is adaptable to human environments.

In tropical regions, including Florida, other visible kind of species called Cimex hemipterus, are also known to swarm among poultry and bats. Other places, such as West Africa and South America, are home to the Leptocimex boueti species that infests bats and humans. On the other hand, the species that are found among bats are called Cimex pilosellus and C. pipistrella, and are lurking all over in North America, primarily in poultry farms.

Since they can survive in birds' nests, they can be seen in houses and buildings that have several bird nests, particularly on rooftops. They are also known to feed on bats or household pets, but their typical source of nutrition is human blood.

Bed bugs have a great worldwide distribution due to human travelers who transport luggage, clothing, bedding, and furniture. Though they may reside in unusual places, they are also likely to be found in small cracks near a bed or in comforters and bed sheets.