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These insects are blood suckers of the worse kind they live off their hosts! In short you and me, us humans and once in a while the odd bird. They love to hide in crevices within walls, under wallpaper. Even in light switches, behind headboards and in folds of a mattress or bed base. Eggs are laid in these harbourage’s, covered with a quick drying adhesive which cements them to the surface on which they are laid. They only visit the host to take a blood meal. Check around your mattress, bed frame and head boards for adults, nymphs and black spots like the photos opposite.
Reproduction & Life Cycle
Shaped like a rubber teat, one end covered with an egg-cap. The female will lay 1-5 eggs per day 541 in one life time. Development time (egg to adult) is 21 days at 86F/30C to 120 days at 65F/18C
There are 5 nymph stages and every one needs a blood meal.
The adult has well developed antennae on its head and a pair of ineffective eyes. It has biting and sucking mouth parts in order to feed on the blood of its host. It normally feeds on upper, exposed parts of the body. Commonly found on a wall close to the sleeping host, or in the bed frame. it takes about 5-10 minutes to suck a full meal from the exposed flesh. all the while leaving brown faecal deposits on pillows, sheets, and areas of harbourage around the bed. Individuals can live up to 316 days and if the temperature falls below 61F/16C adults enter semi-hibernation and can survive for months.