When a host is available, bed bugs will feed about once every week. If for whatever reason the hosts become unavailable, the bed bugs will eventually go into a dormant state in which they can survive, but not develop or reproduce. Adult bed bugs have been known to live for over 1 year without a blood meal in this state, though in our observations they will usually die off after several months. Juvenile bed bugs can live up to 3 months without ever taking a blood meal.
Sensing that there is no blood meal readily available to them, bed bugs will forage for one, searching for a new host with sensors that pick up on body heat and carbon dioxide that is the byproduct of our respiration. Their search for a blood meal can lead them into adjacent units and hallways of multi unit dwellings, enabling them to find food well before a full year has transpired. Because they’re so persistent, powerful bed bug control is the only way to be certain a bed bug infestation has been eliminated.
Posted in: Bed Bug General