The Bed Bug Life Cycle

If you have discovered bed bugs in your home, then you are probably panicking and want to find out how to get rid of them as soon as possible. It is important to learn about the life cycle of in order to fully understand what you are up against. If you notice several generations of bed bugs around your home, then it could be a sign that the infestation has been around for a while. This information would be helpful to an exterminator because this indicates the severity of the infestation.

In order to identify if there are several generations of bed bugs in your home, you need to be aware of what each stage looks like. There are essentially seven stages to a bed bug’s life cycle.

  1. Egg – Bed bugs start their lives in eggs, which have a milky white color to them. These eggs are about one millimeter in length, so they can be very hard to see because they are comparable in size to a couple grains of salt. The egg takes approximately ten days to hatch.
  2. 1st Stage Nymph – There are five stages of growth that nymphs go through. 1st stage nymphs are 1.5 millimeters in length. As soon as they come out of their eggs, they can start feeding immediately. Throughout these nymph stages the bed bugs are not mature, so they will not begin to breed until they are fully adults.
  3. 2nd Stage Nymph – Once a bed bug has gone through its first molt, it will become a 2nd stage nymph, which is about 2 millimeters long.
  4. 3rd Stage Nymph – After molting again, bed bugs become 3rd stage nymphs and are typically 2.5 millimeters long.
  5. 4th Stage Nymph – At this stage, bed bugs grow to approximately 3 millimeters long.
  6. 5th Stage Nymph – This is the final nymph stage and bed bugs can grow up to 4.5 millimeters long.
  7. Adult – It takes about five weeks for a nymph to become an adult. At this point, they are able to breed. The lifespan of a bed bug most commonly ranges from four to six months. Some bed bugs may live for years and can go months without feeding.
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