Within a short period after fertilization, bed bugs will lay their eggs. Under optimal temperature conditions, these laid eggs will hatch in about one week. Bed bugs often lay their eggs in dark places where they will remain undetected and within cracks and crevices to provide optimal temperature and protection for their eggs to thrive. It is also important to note that the most preferred location where bed bugs lay their eggs is often near their host; so that when it hatches, the nymphs will quickly get access to feed on their host—without a blood meal, the nymphs will not grow and will not move to the next nymphal stage or adulthood, and sooner or later they may die. The common sites where you can find bed bugs eggs are highlighted below.
Box springs are made up of a wooden frame in the form of a rectangle and structured with springs, which support mattresses. Box springs are a perfect place for bed bugs to lay their eggs. Not just because of their wilfulness but it's of their natural instincts. Also, bed bugs will easily access blood meals from their host without stress, aiding in egg production. You will also find their eggs in the bed frames' cracks.
A mattress is the best place for bed bugs to lay eggs. They can lay their eggs in the shallow part of open mattresses or small holes. They find it considerate to lay their eggs there because they can feed easily, which promotes mating, so their nymph can get blood meal when they hatch.
Pillows are a great asset to our daily lives as they provide comfort and support for our necks, backs and even legs. It is, in fact, one of the household assets that we can't do without, from serving as back support while watching movies to providing a comfy neck rest while we sleep. In addition, our closeness with pillows is a guaranteed site for bed bugs to feel safe and lay their eggs to ensure their continuity. The only disadvantage of a pillow over other sites is that it can be thrown from one place to another, and their laid eggs may be dislodged from their site.
Furniture, including chairs, tables, and cupboards, is an excellent place for bed bugs to lay their eggs. You can find bed bug eggs in foams of chairs and cracks in wooden furniture and cupboards as this site offers a dark, safe and easy access for hatched nymphs to get to their host.
A common site to find bed bug eggs is on luggage containing clothes, especially the ones you have used for a long time. You can find bed bug eggs or newly hatched nymphs in the zip area of your luggage. You can also find them inside the luggage within clothes and pockets of trousers or along the tension scrap of your luggage. The eggs can also be found on the exterior part of the luggage, especially along the zipper, which is the most common location.
Why is it hard to spot Bed bugs?
Bed bugs are small, flat, and nocturnal insects, which makes them very difficult to spot. They are only about the size of an apple seed (5-7mm) and can hide in tiny cracks and crevices, making it easy for them to go unnoticed.
Bed bugs are also very good at hiding during the day and only come out at night to feed on human blood. They are attracted to the carbon dioxide we exhale, body heat, and other chemicals we emit, making our beds and sleeping areas their favourite hiding spots.
Additionally, bed bugs are very good at adapting to their surroundings and can change their colour and shape depending on their environment. For example, after a blood meal, they may appear reddish-brown and engorged, but they can quickly change back to their normal flat, oval shape and pale colour once they digest the blood.
Bed bugs can also be elusive and quickly move from one location to another, making it difficult to pinpoint their exact location. They can hitchhike on clothing, luggage, and other personal belongings, spreading the infestation to new locations.
Overall, their small size, ability to hide in tiny cracks and crevices, nocturnal behaviour, and adaptability make bed bugs very hard to spot and control. It is important to be vigilant and take immediate action at the first signs of a bed bug infestation to prevent the problem from worsening.
Bed Bug life cycle
Bed bugs go through several stages in their life cycle, starting as eggs and progressing to nymphs and eventually adult bugs. Here is a breakdown of the bed bug life cycle:
- Eggs: Female bed bugs lay their eggs in clusters of 10-50 at a time, usually in crevices or cracks near the bed or other furniture. The eggs are white, oval-shaped, and about 1mm in size.
- Nymphs: After hatching, the bed bug goes through five nymph stages, each stage requiring a blood meal before moulting to the next stage. Nymphs are similar in appearance to adult bed bugs but smaller and lighter in colour. They are also more translucent and difficult to spot.
- Adult bed bugs: Once the bed bug reaches its final stage, it becomes an adult. Adult bed bugs are around 5-7mm in size and are reddish-brown in colour. They have a flat, oval-shaped body and six legs.
Bed bugs require a blood meal to moult to the next stage during each stage, and they can survive for several months without a meal. The entire bed bug life cycle can take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks, depending on the temperature and availability of food.
How do bedbugs reproduce?
Bed bugs reproduce through a process called traumatic insemination, which is a form of mating that is unique to certain insects. During traumatic insemination, the male bed bug uses its sharp genitalia to pierce the female's abdomen and inject sperm directly into her body cavity. The sperm then travels through the female's circulatory system and eventually fertilizes her eggs.
Female bed bugs can mate multiple times throughout their lives and lay several eggs daily, depending on their access to blood meals. The eggs are usually laid in clusters of 10-50 in cracks and crevices near the bed or other furniture, and they hatch within 6-10 days.
Bed bugs go through five nymph stages before adulthood, and each stage requires a blood meal before moulting to the next stage. Adult bed bugs can live for several months without a meal but usually feed every 3-7 days.
Because of their ability to reproduce quickly and survive for long periods without food, bed bug infestations can quickly grow out of control if left untreated. It is important to take immediate action at the first signs of a bed bug infestation to prevent the problem from worsening.
Click here to learn more about how mating among bed bugs takes place.
What kills bed bug eggs?
Steam at about 100 °C will kill bed bugs in all stages of development, including their eggs.
How sticky are bed bug eggs?
Bed bug eggs are sticky as though they appear to touch. They are, however, well adhered to laid surfaces.
How many eggs can bed bugs lay?
Bed bugs can lay up to 5 eggs per night and up to 500 eggs in their lifetime.
How do you find bed bugs dwelling?
Once you can spot a bug, it may be challenging to trace it back to its dwellings as they crawl very fast and disappear from your sight before you know it, especially when they detect a threat. However, you can look for signs like dark spots or blood stains on bedding and eggs, and you may decide to check for cracks on your walls.
To know more about hidden sites of bed bugs, check out our previous posts.
Is it challenging to keep bedbugs away?
Yes, bedbugs are tough to control. But, unlike cockroaches, they hide in dark places, especially corners, between the mattress, box springs, and under-bed frames. This is where you can find them when you search under the bed and in the seams of the mattress.
Do bedbugs lay eggs?
Yes, bed bugs lay eggs. Female bed bugs can lay several eggs daily, usually in clusters of 10-50, depending on their access to blood meals. The eggs are small, white, and oval-shaped, and they are typically laid in cracks and crevices near the bed or other furniture.
Bed bug eggs are very hard to spot as they are only about 1mm in size, and they are often hidden in the seams of the mattress, the box spring, or the bed frame. They also resist many common insecticides, making eradicating an infestation difficult.
After the eggs are laid, they hatch within 6-10 days, depending on the temperature and humidity. The newly hatched bed bugs are called nymphs, and they go through five nymph stages before adulthood. Each nymph stage requires a blood meal before moulting to the next stage.
Because bed bugs can lay multiple eggs per day, and each egg can hatch into a new nymph, infestations can grow quickly if left untreated. It is important to take immediate action at the first signs of a bed bug infestation to prevent the problem from worsening.