If you’ve ever wondered how long bedbugs live, you’re not alone. Bedbugs have a surprisingly long life span for a small creature. They are not strictly on a feeding schedule and can last anywhere from a week to a few months. However, they do need to feed to molt and produce eggs. Therefore, you should use caution when you find an infestation, and be aware of your surroundings.
Bedbugs go through five molts in their lifecycle. A female can lay up to 500 eggs during her life, each about the size of a grain of salt. The eggs hatch in two to five weeks and the bedbug nymphs survive for about five weeks before dying due to dehydration. The male and female bedbugs are able to reproduce, and once they’re mature, they’ll make one or two feedings per week.
Depending on the species, bedbug eggs can hatch anywhere from six to 17 days. Young bed bugs are called nymphs, and they have to go through five molts before they reach adulthood. In ideal conditions, this process can take up to 37 days. Temperature is one of the most important factors in this process. During their development, bedbugs will be active between 57 and 97 degrees Fahrenheit. Warmer temperatures encourage them to molt more quickly.
Adult bedbugs are wingless and oval in shape, and are a quarter of an inch long. They have well-developed antennae and small compound eyes. Their pronotum bears numerous tiny hairs. Their immature stage, called nymphs, are smaller, with a thin outer skeleton and a yellowish-white color.