Characteristics: Two pairs of wings normally present; mouth parts piercing and sucking, forming a beak, or rostrum, normally held under the body. Metamorphosis usually incomplete, with egg and nymphal stages
• Flat, oval insects, with very short, functionless forewings; • Hindwings absent; • Rostrum lies in a ventral groove; • Tarsi 3-segmented; • Exclusively bloodsucking
Species characteristics and host/habitat:
Common bed bug (Cimex lectularius) Adults, 5mm long; reddish-brown in colour, becoming purple after feeding; well-developed antennae; prominent, simple eyes; feet clawed so can climb rough but not smooth surfaces; ratio of head width (including eyes) to length of third antennal segment usually greater than 1.7
The principal host is man, though other warmblooded animals can be parasitised. Found in human habitations throughout the world.
Other blood-feeding bugs
Blood-feeding bugs, very similar in appearance to the Common bed bug, can often be found infesting birds’ nests and bat roosts. In certain circumstances, these bugs may invade houses and attack humans. They include: * Pigeon Bug * Martin Bug