Question about the life stages of the bed bug...(5 posts)
So this is a question of entymological interest, but also with practical implications...
I've read often that an adult bed bug can live without feeding for 18 months, but what about a brand new hatchling?
So here's the practical scenario: I heat treat some items in a Packtite, but for whatever reason an egg buried deep in the items does not die. I put the materials in a Ziploc bag. 10-14 days later, this egg hatches. The critter has no access to a blood meal. How long would it survive? What about other stages of bed bug development? Are they more or less fragile than the full grown adult when it comes to starvation?
And as an aside, one last question: I thought that some insects produce eggs that are very long lived, if the conditions are not right for hatching. How long can bed bug eggs remain eggs? Do they all automatically hatch in 10-14 days?
There is a study dane about survival times and newly hatched bugs will die first under starvation. Survival times are intertwined with temperatures as is egg development.
If starving them keep the containers in a warm place to accelerate the process. Don't have the book handy at the moment but the life stage that lived 18 months is at 50F at 99F it was only about 3 months.
Thanks for the clarification, spideyjg!
I found information about the studies on the length of BB's lives... and actually it's kinda depressing, unless I am misunderstanding some aspects of the research...
The depressing part is the quote about the research of A.W. Bacot in 1914:
"Bacot (1914) kept bugs fasting in various stages of development in an outhouse for 18 months and induced them to feed after this period."
So, if he starved them for 18 months and then they were fed again, I assume reviving them from whatever metabolic slow-down they were in, then this suggests they can live for LONGER than 18 months without feeding...
Jim is correct about the role of temperature, but his recall was off on the 99 degree F trial.
At 37 degrees C (98.6 F) the mean average survival time for once fed first instar specimens was 16.8 days.
At 27 degrees C (80.6 F) the average was 27.8 days for the first instar group.
At 18 degrees C (64.4 F) the average was 113.6 days (I think this is the trial that Jim was recalling)
For adults the averages were 32.8 days at 98 degrees F & 39.5 days at 80 degrees.
A bed bugs lifespan is directly related to the ambient temperature of the harborage.
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