Bedbugs a growing problem in the Inland Northwest

 
 

Tiny bugs, big problem

Bedbugs – or Cimex lectularius, the most common type – are small, brown, chili-flake-size parasitic insects that prefer to feed on human blood. Their name comes from their favorite hiding place: near or inside beds, or other warm areas. As one pest-control specialist put it, “Wherever you spend the most time, the bedbugs will follow.”

They’re mostly active at night. When they find exposed skin – faces, necks, arms and legs – they start to feed by piercing the skin and sucking blood. The whole process takes about 20 minutes. Once they’re full, they go back into hiding and wait a few days before starting the process over again.

This goes on for six to 12 months – the average lifespan of a bedbug in warm conditions. All the while, the well-fed females are laying five to six eggs a day, which take about 37 days to fully mature.