How Do Bed Bugs Reproduce?

by Dylan Bowen April 04, 2022 2 min read

How Do Bed Bugs Reproduce?

How do bed bugs reproduce?

Bed bugs are small creatures that habitually live on furniture or bedding. The bite from a bed bug is known to be itchy but not serious and usually do not result in any other health complications. However, the bed bug bite could potentially result in skin alterations such as small areas along the skin becoming red and blotchy or even developing severe blisters along the skin too.  

How do bed bugs reproduce?

Bed bugs are only able to survive because of their fast reproductive process, bed bugs can reproduce rapidly and in large quantities. Bed bugs utilize the procedure of traumatic insemination to reproduce. The male bed bug breaks the female bed bugs shell to insert sperm in to the female’s cavity known as the hemocoel.  The sperm moves around the female bed bugs blood stream into the ovaries and them of course impregnates the eggs. The female bed bug then leaves to join another anchorage and lay eggs for 6-8 weeks after the mating process, this happens just after mating one time. 

Its vital to understand exactly how bed bugs can reproduce, their reproduction cycle is important to see how they create new swarms. Bed bugs can double, triple, and even quadruple their size in just a few short weeks.    

Bed bug reproduction cycle:

  1. Bed bugs start off as an egg, the egg is the size of a grain of rice.
  2. The eggs then devise into a nymph, which appears to look like a smaller type of a mature bed bug.   
  3. The nymph will then go through five stages which is known as the instars, after which it is an adult bed bug. At each stage of the process, it sheds its shell. 
  4. Now that the nymph is a fully developed bed bug, it can start to mate. The reproduction process for bed bugs is known as traumatic insemination, this is when the male bed bug breaks through the female’s shell and inserts his sperm into the female’s body cavity. The sperm then travels through female bed bug into the ovaries and impregnates the egg.
  5. Over the next 6-8 weeks, the female bed bug will approximately lay around 1 egg a day. The female can mate again and remain laying eggs.  

How do bed bugs mate?

Bed bugs mate through the process of traumatic insemination. The mating approach is popular amongst insect species, but not in further established animals. The male bed bug crawls on top of the female bed bug to start mating. The male bed bug uses traumatic insemination, this is where the male breaks through the females shells and injects his sperm and then the sperm will swim into the ovaries  of the female bed bug and fertilize the egg.

Dylan Bowen
Dylan Bowen


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