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What are the first signs of bedbugs?

July 2nd, 2021

Bedbugs can be seen with the naked eye, but there are other tell-tale signs that notify people that they’ve got bedbugs. It’s important to remember that even the most tidy and clean homes can have a bedbug infestation and so homeowners should know what signs of bedbugs to look for. Once bedbugs are introduced into any space where they have access to food (i.e. the blood from sleeping humans or animals), they will grow and spread into a thriving colony if left untreated.

The team here at BW Nature Control have extensive training and experience in helping homeowners, renters and landlords eliminate bedbug infestations from houses, apartments, condominiums and cottages. We’ll answer some commonly asked questions to help you identify the first signs of bedbugs:

  • What do bedbugs look like?
  • How to identify bedbug bites?
  • Where should I look for the signs of bedbugs in my home?

If you suspect that you’ve got bedbugs in your home, reach out to a qualified pest control specialist right away. Bedbug colonies can grow incredibly quickly, therefore dealing with the bedbugs before they grow into a larger infestation will help you get back to a good night’s sleep with less worry, disruption, and expense.

What do bedbugs look like?

Most people are able to recognize bedbugs by looking for these distinguishing features:

  • Size – bedbugs are relatively small and can be between 1-7 mm long.
  • Shape – oval
  • Height – flat profile, not rounded like a lady bug, for example.
  • Colour – reddish-brown
  • Wings – none
  • Legs – six
  • Antennae – two
  • Body segments- three (although commonly appears as just two)

What do bedbug bites look like?

Bite marks are usually the first noticeable sign of bedbugs in a home. We say “bite marks” instead of “bites” because you won’t feel the actual bite due to the small secretion of anesthetic that bedbugs inject into their victims to numb the skin. By the time the bite shows a mark, up to a couple of days later, the insect has safely crawled back to a hiding spot. Clever, eh?!

While they are certainly itchy, and can sometimes develop into fluid-filled blisters, bites from bedbugs are rarely dangerous. Bite marks from bedbugs can appear on your skin as:

  • red and swollen
  • dark spot at the center of each bite
  • arranged in lines or clusters
  • multiple bites grouped together
  • itchy

Bedbugs feed mostly at night time and prey on their victims (i.e. you and your family members) while they are sleeping. They mainly bite skin which is exposed while sleeping include your:

  • face
  • neck
  • arms
  • hands

It can take several weeks for people to realize that they have bedbugs because the pests sometimes go days between feedings (i.e. biting people and pets) and the bites can often be mistaken as mosquito bites.

Where should I look for the signs of bedbugs in my home?

Bedbugs typically live close to where they have access to humans or animals for nighttime feeding. You can find bedbugs in your bed, furniture, carpet, clothing, and other belongings.

In the bedroom, you might notice signs of bedbugs when you are changing your bedsheets for laundering. When removing your bed sheets, try not to shake them too much and look for:

  • small black dots at the ends and corners of your bed
  • small blood stains on your sheets
  • slight odour, similar to that of almond

To search for the actual insects themselves, use a flashlight and look carefully in their favourite hiding places:

  • mattresses
  • box springs
  • bed frames
  • headboards
  • pillows and bedding
  • cracks or seams of furniture
  • carpeting around baseboards
  • spaces behind light switches and electrical outlet plates
  • curtains
  • Clothes

How to get rid of bedbugs

If you suspect that you have bedbugs living in your home, it is vital that you get rid of them; the problem will not go away on its own. At the first sign of bedbugs in your home, contact a trusted exterminator or pest control company right away, or if you are renting your home, contact your landlord or property manager to inform them of the situation.

As the pest control specialists serving Ottawa, Gatineau and the Outaouais Region, we have a number of different types of treatments to eliminate bedbugs from homes, apartments, condominiums, cottages and commercial properties, too. The BW Nature Control team are highly trained on bedbug extermination and have extensive experience to best identify which treatment will be the most effective in different situations, and work with landlords, homeowners, property managers and business owners to address their questions and concerns about each treatment type.

Wherever you are in Ottawa, Gatineau, the National Capital Region or throughout the Outaouais, trust the certified and experienced team of pest management specialists at BW Nature Control to get rid of any unwanted pests including bedbugs. We only use products which have been approved by Health Canada and custom-tailor our pest control solutions to suit your specific needs and situation. Contact us with your questions today!


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