Bed bugs are ectoparasites, meaning they are external parasites. Like vampires, they suck the blood of humans and animals. Their bodies are rather flat, allowing them to crawl into very tight spaces such as between mattresses and box springs, seams of mattresses, cushions, luggage, bedding, furniture, behind wallpaper, etc.
They are great travelers too! The scent of human skin can send a bed bug racing across a room at a pace of 10′ per hour. That’s fast considering they are between 1 – 7 mm in length. Hiding between bedding, pillows, luggage, overnight bags, the bed bug can easily become a cross-country or international traveler… no passport required.
Bed bugs communicate with each other via aggregation pheromones. When they find a host, they emit an aggregation pheromone to let other bed bugs know to come on over. Unlike a sex pheromone, the aggregation pheromone calls both male and female.