Recent bites from bed bugs (photo)

by nobugsonme on April 8, 2008 · 28 comments

in bed bug bites, bed bugs

recent bites from bed bugs

Originally uploaded by louento.pix

Another bed bug bite photo from entomologist Lou Sorkin, who feeds his “pet” bed bug colony regularly. As odd as this seems to someone going through bed bugs, researchers like Lou go through all this just to learn more about our enemy, Mr. Cimex Lectularius. And you know the saying, “someone has to do it”? Well, no one actually has to, in this case. So thank goodness they do!

Lou says of this photo,

“[Bed bug bites] from bed bug adult and nymphs. First, second instars of nymphs. Adult bed bug fed on top of left vertical-positioned vein. There was no appreciable size difference between adult and nymph bites. The initial swelling reaction subsides around 30 minutes after bites and feeding.”

Bedbugger S. also found that when she tested her bed bug bite reactions (actually watching bugs bite her in a laboratory setting), her adult and nymph bed bug bites were not discernable from one another in size or appearance.

Remember, click the photo, then “all sizes” then “large” to view in all its glory.  And note: the purplish mark on the lower right is a birthmark, not a bed bug bite reaction!

1 Very mad November 8, 2008 at 1:25 pm

So they only bite the left side of the body?

2 very mad November 8, 2008 at 1:26 pm

will they go away if i purchase a new bed?

3 nobugsonme November 9, 2008 at 2:33 am

No very mad,

They can bite any part of the body. They may be biting on one side of your body because of where they are harboring (I’d make sure the PCO knows to inspect that side of the bed especially carefully) or possibly other factors.

And it will not necessarily go away if you buy a new bed. They can live in the home or other furniture, not just the bed. Do get a professional in to treat. If the PCO agrees, after treatment, use a quality encasement to trap them in the mattress. Make sure the bed frame is de-bugged carefully.

Please come to the forums if you want more support or suggestions.

4 itchy and scratchy April 17, 2009 at 9:59 pm

ok….i think the hotel we stayed in last weekend had bed bugs although i phoned them and they said they had an exterminator come and inspect and he said there were none. we checked out on sunday, i noticed my first bites on Monday morning and there are still a few new ones today which is Friday. Could these all be from the hotel stay or do i for sure have them? I’ve been checking but can’t find any bugs or evidence so far.

5 nobugsonme April 20, 2009 at 2:46 pm

We are told people may react as much as 9 days later, however, you first reacted on Monday, which is 3 days after your first Morning there.

If you newly reacted on Friday, 5 days after your last morning there, this may mean you brought them home. No one can say for sure. If you have an infestation, it is likely quite light.

You would have the most luck with a human pest control operator who is experienced with bed bugs and does really detailed inspections (which take hours to do) or perhaps a reputable bed bug dog team.

Please come to the forums if you would like to discuss this further:

6 CC May 31, 2009 at 2:20 pm

I’ve been getting some red bites on my arms and legs for a couple weeks on and off though. I just moved into an apartment building and all of the furniture was either mine from years ago or brand new. I slept on my new couch and woke up with about 15 small red bumps/bites all over my calves,knees, thighs, butt, and hips. I am totally skeeved out b/c I think it’s bed bugs. I had an exterminator come and he sprayed around perimeter of apt and also set glue traps behind the couch and my bed. I’ve been staying at my b/f’s house b/c i am scared to death of sleeping there again. Exterminator flipped couch over and examined btw cushions and said he didn’t see anything there or rest of apt but also said that doesn’t mean anything. How fast do they multiply? My b/f never got any bites on him when he stays over with me. Not sure if I’m just losing my mind or what?

7 nobugsonme May 31, 2009 at 11:38 pm


It’s possible they were in the apt. to begin with.
It’s possible they were in the moving truck, blankets, etc. used for the move.
It’s even possible they came in a brand new piece of furniture, because many companies cart away used mattresses in the same trucks they use to deliver new mattresses, sofas, and other items.

Your boyfriend may not be allergic. Many people are bitten and do not react.
We are told treatment may not work if you do not stay in your home, to attract them out to cross poison and die.

If you would like more feedback and suggestions, please come to our forums:

8 vjenki June 18, 2009 at 10:30 pm

We were at animal kingdom lodge all last week. we arrived on Saturday. Monday i had my first red spots
My son and grandson had some too. They started out like mosquito bites butthere were not mosquiotes in Florida where we were.
Now my legs are both covered in bites from the knee down to ankle. It itches like crazy and some are even like small blistery bumps. Is it possible this is bed bug bites.

9 nobugsonme June 19, 2009 at 1:42 am


It could be bed bugs if you were exposed to them somewhere in your travels.

If the bites are on people’s legs only, I would consider the possibility of fleas.

Please come to the forums if you need more support:

10 latisha barksdale December 28, 2009 at 6:02 am

whenever my daughter and I come to NY we get bites. They are like big mosquito bites, red,and irritating. Once we had to get rid of the wooden frame of my sons bed, because we saw this brown looking bug and what looked to be some type of larva egg cluster thing. The bites are close to each other, like two or three going down the arm or neck. My son or his dad dont complain of bites, but I have noticed the red blood stains on his sheets. Ive also seen a brown bug two different times climbbing up the way in my sons dads room, it looks just like some of the photos of bed bugs. Is it possible for them to walk up walls? Is there anything we can put on our skin to protect us from them biting? We seem to be very sensitive to these bites, especially my daaughter.

11 nobugsonme December 28, 2009 at 7:01 pm


Yes– bed bugs can walk up walls.

No– there is not really anything you can put on your skin to make the bites stop. Your son and his dad are probably being bitten– lots of people do not react. But they can spread the problem to others. Anyone with bed bugs NEEDS prompt, good professional treatment by someone who knows how to get rid of bed bugs. Otherwise it will just get worse until they are crawling all over the home day and night, and being transported everywhere the family goes.

Be warned, they can “hitchhike” a ride in your luggage and follow you home. I would strongly advise against visiting anyone with bed bugs. Our Travel FAQs describe precautions you can take before going home.

If you have further questions or want to discuss this, please post in our Bedbugger Forums! You will get more responses there.

12 deezy February 24, 2010 at 12:04 pm

the bed bug’s is the worst thing you can ever have in the place of living………………….That is 4 sure i know 4 a fact you never get rid of em’ but u can control em tho

13 nobugsonme February 25, 2010 at 1:24 pm


It is possible to get rid of bed bugs, but not easy to be sure. If attached neighbors have them, it can be especially tricky.

If you need support or have questions, please post to our forums where you will get more of a response:

14 leanne watkins April 1, 2010 at 3:00 pm

can bed bugs travel on humans? or is it just furniture/clothes/luggage etc???
found two on different nites at the hostel of different sizes, which had just fed as they had human blood when squashed!!! grossed out!

15 nobugsonme April 1, 2010 at 7:41 pm


Bed bugs can hitch a ride in your luggage and other stuff or even on or in your clothing. The travel FAQs should help you with precautions to avoid taking them to your next location, once you’ve been exposed.

16 amanda April 13, 2010 at 9:23 pm

Me and my boyfriend moved in this trailor and we started letting our two friends stay over,well i started getting bites on me at night that itch like crazy,and so did my friends boyfriend.well we were like this for three weaks and didnt know what it was,we even went to the hospital and they said we had something that was contagious but nobody else was getting it and we just found out its bedbugs. not everyone has an allergic reaction,it was only me and my friends boyfriend that had an allergic reaction,my boyfriend and my friend was fine.

17 nobugsonme April 14, 2010 at 8:02 pm

Hi Amanda,

Yes — some people react to bed bug bites, others don’t. Still others will start to react in time.

I hope you are getting good knowledgeable help with your bed bug problem. They are hard to get rid of, but it can be done.

18 Dana May 18, 2010 at 9:32 am

Hi There,

My family and I recently moved into an apratment building a couple of weeks ago. My son started getting red, itchy spots on various parts of his body. We have been told by 2 different doctors that it could be bed bugs.

My question is, can you see them? My husband and I have sprayed his room, his mattress was covered in plastic, and my dog has been in there numerous times and we all have no problem. I have searched his bed/room an hour after he has fallen a sleep and have found nothing.

Please help because I am freaking out!!

19 nobugsonme May 18, 2010 at 6:47 pm


Bed bugs are big enough to see. Even first instar nymphs, which are translucent if unfed, are 1 mm long.

However, a low level (early stage) infestation might be hard to spot if recently introduced. You can’t rely on bed bug bite reactions — many people do not react and your husband and yourself may be among them.

Remember you can be bit anywhere in the home — not just bed — or in other locations (school, work, movie theater, friend’s home). Please read the FAQs (esp. this one on detection) and come to the forums if you have questions/want support.

20 angry and fustrated May 29, 2010 at 1:07 am

I recently found out on a recent visit to a relative in another state about their bed bug infestation. I was affected so bad that the same areas bittten from previous days were bitten again. Now that they are healed I have large dark circles in places where the bites were swollen as a result to the allergic reaction to the bedbug toxin. What is the best treatment to get rid of the large, dark, round spots after benadryl and hydrocortisol are used?
Also my terminator recommended GOODNIGHT bug spray as the remedy of choice(for both bug and eggs) and keeping my stuff along with the luggages in trash bags to increase heat when out in the sun. Is this true?
Is drying clothes for 2 hrs in one cycle enough to kill insect?

21 nobugsonme May 29, 2010 at 11:31 pm

angry and frustrated,

I would consult a doctor or dermatologist about the large dark circles remaining after your bites stop swelling. This is not a symptom I have heard others describe, but a doctor may be able to tell you more.

Drying dry clothing items in a hot dryer should kill all bed bugs and eggs in thirty minutes (I stress this is items which are already dry). It should not take wet clothing 2 hours on hot to kill bed bugs. However, thick items such as pillows, comforters, etc. may take much longer and we are not aware of research on this so we do not have a number to give you as a guide.

I would recommend coming to the Bedbugger Forums to ask questions and get support. (You will get more responses there, and more quickly too.)

This is a forum discussion on the product you mentioned, which may help you assess its value.

Bed bugs are very difficult to treat. It’s not just what you spray, but where, and how much, and when. And what else you use. (Most experts seem to recommend a multi-pronged approach.)

It is possible to self-treat for bed bugs, but it is difficult and you have to do a lot of research. If you can get a professional with lots of bed bug experience to treat your home, I would strongly recommend this. If you cannot, then our resources and FAQs may be helpful.

22 Tammy June 13, 2010 at 11:12 am

Hi, my daughter had recently spent the night a friends house and had returned all bit up on her arms and legs, the bites just look like huge mosquito bites and some have a ring around the bite she is the only one that seems to be getting bit…we took her to the doctor to try figure out what type of bite it is….the dr said that if it was bed bugs that they would be visible where ever they may be…so he just suggested her to take some antihistamine for a couple of day…days after the woman of the house then mentioned that her daughter and her family had stayed with her for a bit and had brought bedbugs into the house…but she didn’t get bit at all…and not after seeing all of the other comments I am going to treat this as bed bugs…all of the items my daughter had taken with her had been put into a huge garbage bad and still is..its been 2 weeks since and the bites are just now going away, but her bites were immediate…she woke up the next day bit up her arms and legs so I am a little confused…thank goodness we had not experienced any bites here at home since she had returned…please if you can help with any input that would be greatly appreciated…

23 laurie jensen June 13, 2010 at 1:16 pm

Tammy, the part about the bed bugs being visible is way off. They come out between 2-5 am usually. If they are seen during daylight hours then that person has a huge problem.

You could put the bags in the freezer if possible for a few days to kill the bugs if there are any. Good luck.


24 Melissa July 8, 2010 at 10:11 am

Hello All,

I found a bug on my bedroom floor two days ago and I am uncertain if it is a bedbug or not. It is oval shape and brownish- orange. It has red, white, and yellow stripes on the lower part of its back. It also has antennae (small) and an orange shaded belly. When I squashed it, a purple- black stain came out of it. I looked at pictures online and I noticed that bedbugs are usually brownish-red and somewhat transparent so that you can see the blood. The bug that I found was not transparent. It also had a thin black outline on the upper part of its back.

I stripped down my bed and tore it apart looking for bugs or stains. I also looked in my dresser, night stands, and air vents. I vacuumed in the corners and also the entire carpeted area. I did not find anything else besides the original bug.

I have a big fear of bugs and I am wondering if I should be concerned about the bug that I found. Any suggestions?


25 Anita July 9, 2010 at 6:47 am

I recently stayed at a hotel. I felt like I was flicking bugs off me all night as I tried to fall asleep. When I woke up, I had three smal itchy patches. I let the clerk know that they need to check it out. Since home, the itching got worse, and it seems like the itching areas have gotten bigger. Now, its not just small bumps but some larger ones too, all in the same place. Some places there is a line of bites, others not. From everything I read, it sounds like bed bugs. Do I really need to exterminate in my house? Is it almost certain that I brought them home? I had an 8 hours drive in the car home. Do I need to exterminate my car? If heat kills them, would the heat in the car from the 100 degree weather kill them if my bags were still in the car?

26 nobugsonme July 11, 2010 at 1:38 am


You first need to determine if you brought bed bugs home. It is fully possible to be bitten in a hotel and not bring them home.

I recommend taking some of the suggested steps in our Detection FAQ.

Please come to our active user Forums if you would like more support or suggestions.

27 nobugsonme July 11, 2010 at 1:42 am

Hi Melissa,

This does not sound like a bed bug, but why not look at our photos of bed bugs in order to compare what you saw with the photos?

If you can get a picture and upload it to a free photo sharing site (like, you can post a link in our user Forums and someone will probably be able to identify it for you.

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