The bedbug is an insect known for its bad smell when frightened or crushed. It comes in many families and is present throughout the globe.
The funny world of bedbugs
Bedbugs belong to the suborder Heteroptera. These insects are divided into 45,000 species worldwide. In France, there are 1,350 kinds. Depending on the category, some can live in an aquatic or underwater environment (on the surface) and finally, on dry land.
They undergo 5 metamorphoses between the larval stage and the adult bug. Their size and color may vary depending on their family. Bedbugs are shaped like a shield (scutellum) and their wings are grouped in two parts on the insect’s back. They are made up of a rigid membrane on the upper side and a flexible one on the lower side. They get their particularity from the scent gland they have on the thorax. It gives off a foul odor as soon as the insect feels in danger or when it is crushed.
Finally, bedbugs are biting-sucking. Their mouthpart allows them to suck sap from fruits, plants or animals.
The different families of bedbugs
Ground bugs are classified according to their diet. We then find:
phytophages which only consume plant tissues and are responsible for crop disasters; predators that feed on small insects; hematophagous animals that feed on blood (like bedbugs).
Some bedbugs can have a mixed diet, namely phytophagous and predatory. There are three main families of bedbugs:
the pentatomids which include the green bug, but also the wood bug or the diabolical bug; the miridae composed of lygus rugulipennis, lygocoris pabulinus or even nesidiocoris tenuis; tingids which are none other than reticulated bugs or tiger bugs.
Among aquatic or underwater bugs, we find:
Nepomorpha, which are water bugs living in stagnant water; Naucoridae are found in ponds, lakes and slow to moderate streams.
Finally, we also find the Cimicidae family which includes the dreaded bedbug. They come in several varieties, such as C. lecturalius which remains predominant, but also C. hemipterus.
Bedbugs cause disasters
Bedbugs cause real damage to plantations. The more numerous they are, the greater the damage, from a simple spot on a fruit to the transmission of pathogens responsible for the death of the plant.
Bedbugs are the most feared by humans because they directly attack their habitat. They can suck blood for 10 to 20 minutes, causing redness, uncontrollable itching and dermatitis. Tiny, they are almost invisible and only come out at night, unless the population is very large. They are also capable of surviving up to 2 years without eating if conditions are suitable.