How Big are Bed Bugs?

People who wake up with bed bug bites often assume that the insects causing them such discomfort must be considerably large.  This, however, is not the case.  Bed bugs in fact are smaller than mosquitos, even though many people find that bed bug bites are the more bothersome of the two.

The average bed bug is no larger than about one quarter of an inch in length, though of course the juveniles of the species will be quite a bit smaller.  Bed bugs are also almost completely flat, which can make them difficult to spot.  These figures, however, only relate to the size of the adult bed bug that has not yet fed.  After feeding from the blood of a host, the bed bug will swell up a little bit, becoming bloated; at this point it can no longer be called flat at all.  Its length does not change appreciably as a part of this bloating, however.

More precise measurements of adult bed bugs suggest that they range from 4-5 mm in terms of length.  They are usually from 1.5 to 3 mm in width.

 

Comments

  1. C Motley says

    Regarding my above post: I need to revise my size comparison scheme. Upon actually looking at a penny in my possession: I can say the bug I saw on my bed was just about the size of Lincoln’ head. That’s STILL a large bug. Again: it was still the same shape and color of the those in the images.

  2. C Motley says

    i happened to awaken a few moments ago and: since I had the ceiling light on: was able to see what I believe was a very large bed bug just above where my head had been: on my bright white mattress liner. it was HUGE. Nearly twice the size of Lincoln’s head on your penny. It had’nt bitten me yet and I insinctively quickly brushed brushed it away. It was the same shape and color of the bugs in your image. I had no idea a bed bug could get so large. This is first encounter with infestation in about 3 years. Back to my cans of sure kill bed bug spray..

  3. CMD says

    i happened to awaken a few moments ago and: since I had the ceiling light on: was able to see what I believe was a very large bed bug just above where my head had been: on my bright white mattress liner. it was HUGE. About twice the size of Lincoln’s head on your penny. It had’nt bitten me yet and I insinctively quickly brushed brushed it away. It was the same shape and color of the bugs in your image. I had no idea a bed bug could get so large. This is first encounter with infestation in about 3 years. Back to my cans of sure kill bed bug spray..

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