What Do Bed Bug Eggs Look Like? (A Guide With Photos)

If you need an answer to the question: What do bed bug eggs look like? We are here to help! Bed bug eggs are pearly white and are 1 mm in length. Bed bug eggs are visible; however, they are pretty small and hard to see unless you have excellent eyesight.

According to the textbook Advances in the Biology and Management of Modern Bed Bugs by Dini Miller, Doggett, and Lee, bed bugs will start to lay eggs 2-5 days after a blood meal. With that in mind, let’s get into everything to know about bed bug eggs and what they look like.

Can You See Bed Bug Eggs?

Yes, you can see bed bug eggs without a microscope. However, since bed bugs tend to place their eggs in hidden areas, you may not notice that there are bed bug eggs on your bed or furniture. We will often see them in hard-to-reach places like underneath the bed frame, inside the box spring, and behind the headboard.

What Do Bed Bug Eggs Look Like on a Mattress?

Bed Bug Eggs Near a Cluster On A Box Spring/Mattress

Bed bug eggs will look like a small pearly white cylinder on a mattress. You may see them within the creases of the mattress seam; if you do suspect bed bugs, it’s essential to put your mattress into a mattress encasement for bed bugs. Bed bug eggs are sticky, and they will be stuck to the surface of your mattress. Usually, you will also find bed bug fecal stains near the eggs.

Bed Bug Eggs On Furniture, What Do They Look Like?

bed bug eggs on furniture (on a brown couch)

What Do Hatched Bed Bug Eggs Look Like?

Bed Bug Eggs Close up + Shed Skin - Hatched Bed Bug Eggs

When bed bug eggs hatch, the top cap will be open. The top of a bed bug egg has a hinge, and it opens up to let the nymph crawl out.

Unhatched Bed Bug Eggs: What Do They Look Like?

unhatched bed bug eggs on a wooden platform bed frame

You will notice that the eggs do not have an opening on the top; you may also see a red dot inside the egg. The red dot is the bed bug nymph’s eye. If you zoom in on the above photo, you will see the red-eye in some bed bug eggs. Seeing this red dot lets, you know that the eggs are unhatched.

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What Do Bed Bug Eggs Look Like Under A Black Light?

Under a black light, a bed bug egg will glow. On occasion, I will use this black light and special glasses to help me find bed bug eggs.

What Stage of Bed Bug Produces Eggs?

Only the adult female bed bug produces eggs. A bed bug will go through 5 stages after hatching. Once the bed bug sheds its 5th skin, it will be an adult bed bug. Bed bugs reproduce through traumatic insemination.

You’ll need a female bed bug that has been inseminated for the female to begin laying eggs. Furthermore, egg production will take place 2-5 days after she has a blood meal. You can learn the differences between a bed bug male vs female here.

In order to lay eggs, bed bugs need blood to feed on. If there is no food available, egg production will begin to cease. The female needs specific functional proteins to produce eggs. The bed bug makes these proteins from the amino acids her body makes after a blood meal.

How Long After a Blood Meal Will a Bed Bug Lay Eggs?

According to the textbook Advances in the Biology and Management of Modern Bed Bugs by Dini Miller, Doggett, and Lee, bed bugs will start to lay eggs 2-5 days after a blood meal.

How Long Does It Take for the Bed Bug Eggs to Hatch?

Under optimal conditions, A bed bug egg will hatch in 5-9 days. Each bed bug egg only contains one unfed baby bed bug. Once a bed bug hatches, it will be on the hunt for a blood meal; this is why the female bed bug will lay the eggs near the host—ensuring that her babies will be able to eat.

How Well Do Bed Bug Eggs Stick?

Bed bug eggs stick very well to whatever surface the adult bed bug lays them on. The female bed bug uses a glue-like substance to adhere her bed bug egg to various objects. Often, I will find bed bug eggs behind a headboard that are just stuck onto the back of the headboard.

Check ou this photo, below where the eggs are sticking on the back of a headboard.

Bed Bug Eggs On The Back Of A Brown Fabric Headboard

You cannot easily pick up or move bed bug eggs. If you find a small whitish thing in your bed, but you can easily pick it up or move it, it is probably not a bed bug egg.

How Many Bed Bugs Are in an Egg?

Each bed bug egg contains one single baby bed bug. However, an adult female bed bug can lay on average 1-9 eggs per day. Once you have a large enough population of adult bed bugs, your bed bug population can explode.

Having multiple adult females in a harborage will quickly create an infestation. However, this takes time since the bed bug lifecycle is between 30 and 45 days. More importantly, the life cycle depends on temperature and blood meals available.

What Color Are Bed Bug Eggs?

Bed bug eggs are pearly white; they are smooth on the surface. A bed bug egg will usually stick to whatever surface the female places it on. The sticky bed bug egg will have less opportunity to get knocked off or put into the washer and dryer when you do your laundry. Furthermore, attaching the egg to a surface with glue will allow the bed bug egg to have a greater chance of hatching.

Bed Bug Eggs Close up On The Side Of A Box Spring

Are Bed Bug Eggs Hard?

Bed bug eggs are not rigid; they are soft to the touch. The bed bug eggs are quiet, allowing the female to place the egg in tight cracks and crevices. Examples of places where the soft bed bug egg will be are: between two pieces of wood on a bed frame or underneath a corner protector on a box spring.

How Big Are Bed Bug Eggs?

Bed bug eggs are about 1mm long, pearly white, and sticky on the outside.

What Do Bug Eggs Look Like to the Human Eye?

Below you can see a photo of some bed bug eggs on the back of a headboard. As you can see, the eggs are tiny, about 1mm in length, and white.

Bed Bug Eggs On The Back Of A Brown Fabric Headboard

How Many Eggs Does A Bed Bug Lay?

Suppose you wonder how many eggs a single bed bug lays in her lifetime. That depends on whether or not she is getting a regular blood meal. According to Dini Miller, Ph.D., Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech. After each blood meal, a bed bug will produce between 5 and 20 eggs. Then she’ll need to either feed or have more blood or have another traumatic insemination to produce more eggs.

How Many Eggs Does a Bed Bug Lay Each Day?

A bed bug getting a regular blood meal will produce 1 to 7 eggs per day for the ten days following a blood meal. Then the female bed bug will take a break from egg-laying to feed on blood. After the next blood meal, a bed bug will once again begin laying eggs 2-5 days after each blood meal.

How Long Can It Take for a Bed Bug to Lay Eggs After Biting?

A bed bug can lay anywhere from 1 to 7 eggs per day, with an average of 3 eggs per day. According to Dini Miller, Ph.D., Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech, it can take anywhere from 2 to 5 days for a fertilized female to start laying eggs after feeding on blood; according to Dini Miller, Ph.D., Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech.

How Old Does a Female Bed Bug Have to Be to Mate and Lay Eggs?

A female bed bug will be between 25 and 45 days old before she begins to lay eggs. More importantly, this is because a female must advance through the five stages before she is ready to lay eggs. Each bed bug stage will take 5-8 days before the nymph is ready to shed its skin and move on to the next stage.

Each stage can last a little longer if no food source is available and the temperature is cool.

Egg (6-14 days to hatch) ➡️ Stage 1 (5-8 days) ➡️ Stage 2 (5-8 days) ➡️ Stage 3 (5-8 days) ➡️ Stage 4 (5-8 days) ➡️ Stage 5 (5-8 days) ➡️ Adult bed bug

Where Do Bed Bugs Lay There Eggs?

Typically, bed bugs will lay their eggs near their harborages or place them in cracks and crevices. However, a female can also apply an egg anywhere she walks. So, in theory, you can find a bed bug egg on sheets, pillows, headboards, walls, picture frames, and more.

Bed Bug Eggs Near a Cluster On A Box Spring/Mattress

A bed bug harborage is where you can find many bed bugs hanging out. A harborage will consist of female bed bugs, male bed bugs, bed bug poop, shed skins, bed bug eggs, and nymphs. Furthermore, the bed bug likes to place the egg in a crack or crevice to protect the egg. However, it’s not always going to put it in a hidden spot.

For this reason, it’s essential to wash your bedding on high heat frequently since you will have a greater chance of killing off some eggs and live bugs.

Familiar places you will find bed bug eggs: in the harborage, between 2 pieces of wood on a bed frame, underneath the wooden slats of a bed frame, behind a headboard, in the seam of a cloth headboard, in the creases of a dust ruffle, the seam of a mattress, in a screw hole, as well as many other close to where people are sleeping.

Do Bed Bugs Lay Eggs in Carpet?

Yes, if an adult female bed bug is walking across a carpet, then there is a good chance that there may be bed bug eggs in the carpet. Furthermore, if your room is infested with bed bugs, then there is a good chance they are squeezing in between the crevice where the carpet meets the wall. See the photo below.

Bed Bug Eggs Near A Carpet

How Easily Do Bed Bug Eggs Spread?

Bed bug eggs do not spread that easily since they are sticky. However, if you happen to pick up an adult female bed bug on your clothing, you can easily pick up some bed bug eggs and transport them to your home.

Well now you have just transported some bed bug eggs into your home by way of your clothing. One example of this how this can happen is when you are sitting in a theatre seat, and an adult female bed bug crawls into your cuff after feeding on your skin. Then you get home and place those pants on a chair in your bedroom.

You can also inadvertently bring home some bed bug eggs if you purchase a used piece of furniture infested with them. Another possibility is that you stay in a hotel room that has bed bugs, and they lay eggs on your luggage. These are just a few examples of how you might bring home some bed bug eggs.

Can Bed Bug Eggs Move?

No, bed bugs do not move on their own. However, you can transport them on furniture, clothing, or other household items. You can find bed bugs and eggs in mattresses, couches, and chairs. However, you can also find it in luggage, boxes, and cars. So it’s essential to wash and dry your clothing after hanging out in public places.

How Common Are Bed Bugs Eggs on Clothes?

Bed bugs can lay their eggs anywhere, including fabrics, like clothing. Bed bugs usually deposit their eggs near the host, such as in the cracks and crevices of beds and bed frames, but they can also lay them on other objects, such as clothing. 

One example of how you may get bed bug eggs on your clothing is if you have some clothes piled up on a bed with adult female bed bugs. One of the adult bed bugs may crawl through your clothing and lay an egg, and now you have a bed bug egg stuck to your clothing.

Since they are so small, you may not even notice the bed bug egg on your clothes. Unfortunately, this is how you can transport bed bug eggs on accident. Since bed bug eggs are sticky, they probably won’t fall off your clothing and land in a new place.

On the other hand, if one of the eggs hatches while you are on public transportation, the newly hatched nymph will probably feed on you and find a good hiding spot on the seat.

What Kills Bed Bug Eggs?

There are many things out there that can kill bed bug eggs. Here is a list of some of the more common things that kill bed bug eggs. First, learn “What do bed bug eggs look like?” before figuring out how to kill bed bug eggs.

Bed Bug Heater

heater for bed bugs like the Thermal Strike or Zapp Bug is excellent for killing bed bug eggs on objects like books, luggage, and clothing. You can place any infested or potentially infested items into the closed chamber and heat them to 120°F or above.

The heater will kill all bed bugs and eggs as long as you leave and heat them for a certain amount of time. The Thermal Strike has a steady core temperate of 140°F, so it’s a great tool in the fight against bed bug eggs!

Heat Treatment

Heat treatment in a house or apartment happens when they either pump heat into the house through hoses, tent the entire house, or bring in portable heaters. It’s an effective method when combined with a residual treatment like CrossFire or Aprehend. However, when used alone, there may always be a few bugs or eggs that get missed due to them being in a cool pocket.

Co2 Fumigation

In 2012, an article was published in the Journal of Medical Entomology by Changlu Wang, Lihua Lü, and Ming Xu about the efficacy of using Co2 as an alternative means of bed bug fumigation. They placed infested objects like boxes and clothing into various sealed bags. Then they measured how many nymphs, eggs, or adults survived after varying the concentration of Co2 pumped in, the time, and temperature.

The study determined that some eggs were always more susceptible to dying when they applied 100% CO2 fumigation. The scientists found that no eggs survived after the 8th hour of straight Co2 fumigation inside a closed chamber. Therefore it takes at least 8 hours to kill bed bug eggs by pumping 100% Co2 into a sealed chamber. 

Steam Heat

Using a steamer to kill bed bugs is a great way to kill bed bug eggs. Remember that a steamer works best when you use it in conjunction with a bed bug heater and bed bug sprays (either chemical or cedar oil). A steamer alone won’t be effective enough to kill all of the bed bugs; you will need something with a residual effect.

Vikane Gas Fumigation

Vikane gas, AKA Sulfuryl fluoride, is odorless gas fumigation pumped into sealed structures to kill bed bug eggs, adult bed bugs, nymphs, and other pests like termites. It is a great way to treat your belongings on a sealed truck. Often if someone is moving, they can hire a company like Bed Bug Fumigation Specialists, who will fumigate all of their stuff on a car before dropping it off at your new residence.

CrossFire

CrossFire’s active ingredients can kill bed bugs and bed bug eggs. The active ingredients in CrossFire are Clothianidin, Metofluthrin, and Piperonyl Butoxide. More importantly, the MGK manufacturer’s fact sheet clearly states that it will kill bed bug eggs, so it’s essential to get the product into the cracks and crevices. You can purchase CrossFire through Do My Own; however, you cannot purchase it without a pest license if you live in certain states, like NY.

Cedar Oil

It is proven to kill all bed bugs’ eggs if you directly spray them with cedar oil. Products like Eco Raider have an ovicidal solid effect, and in lab studies, no nymphs emerged from the treated eggs. Remember that cedar oil does not have good residual when comparing it to Aprehend or other pesticides.

Chlorfenapyr

Chlorfenapyr is the main alternative to pyrethroids since many bed bugs develop resistance to pyrethroids when used long-term over multiple generations of bed bugs. Although Chlorfenapyr does not have quick killing power, it stands out in addition to its lengthy residual potential. More importantly, this pesticide also kills bed bug eggs.

What Temperature Kills Bug Eggs Instantly?

To kill bed bug eggs instantly, you need to expose them to 54.8°C or 130.64°F. However, if they are not brought up to this temperature quickly, you’ll need to increase the heat exposure time. You will have to make sure you hold bed bug eggs at a temperature of 48°C or 118.5°F for over 90 minutes.

Furthermore, bed bug eggs are more heat resistant than live bed bugs. However, they are not impossible to kill. You need the right equipment with proper temperature sensors. This data comes from the study on Temperature and Time Requirements for Controlling Bed Bugs (Cimex lectularius) under Commercial Heat Treatment Conditions by Stephen A. Kells* and Michael J. Goblirsch.

How Long for a Dryer on High to Kill Bed Bug Eggs?

It all depends on the temperature inside of the dryer. If the dryer is only getting up to 118° F, you will need to keep it in the dryer for over 90 minutes. However, if the dryer gets to 130.64°F, you can be sure the bed bug eggs will die immediately. It’s always better to keep items in the dryer for longer than you think. After each workday, we either put our clothing into the dryer for over 90 minutes or use the Thermal Strike bed bug oven instead.

Does Alcohol Kill Bed Bug Eggs?

Technically rubbing alcohol will kill bed bug eggs, but it is not an excellent way to kill bed bugs and their eggs. Rubbing alcohol is a fire hazard and only works if you spray it directly while saturating it onto the bed bug egg. You are better off using a vacuum, dryer, steamer, and professional pest control person to kill your bed bug eggs.

How to Kill Bed Bug Eggs in Electronics?

If a bed bug crawled into your laptop that you use in bed, it might have laid an egg there. You can do a few things for bed bug eggs in electronics. However, I don’t think any are 100%.

You can hire a company that does vikane fumigation inside a closed chamber. Another idea is to check out some of the bed bug heat boxes and email the company to ask if it’s safe to put electronics inside.

Bed bugs require blood to survive, so it’s your best bet if you hire a professional to apply a residual bed bug treatment. Once the eggs hatch, the nymphs will come into contact with the treatment when they are hunting for blood.

How Does Hot Water Effect Bed Bug Eggs?

Hot water is not a practical solution for killing bed bug eggs. The hot water would have to be above 130.64°F. Most hot water coming into a washing machine is not getting up to this temperature. If you want to kill bed bug eggs, use the dryer or a Thermal Strike. Since we get asked this question often, for this reason, we answered the question “do bed bugs die in the washer?” here.

How to Detect Bed Bug Eggs?

You use your eyes, a UV light, or a bed bug dog to detect bed bug eggs. Learning “What do bed bug eggs look like?” will help you identify them.

  • Eyes – You can visibly see bed bug eggs, so if you know what you are looking for, then you may be able to spot one. Look for fecal stains, which will help you narrow down the search area.
  • Use a black light with special glasses like the one from Do My Own. These lights will allow the proteins in the eggs to glow. You must wear special glasses to see them shining.

Do Bed Bug Eggs Move When You Blow on Them?

Bed bug eggs do not move when you blow on them because the female bed bug uses a glue-like material that adheres the bed bug egg to whatever surface she deposits it on. No bed bugs eggs will not move if you blow on them. You will only see movement when the bed bug egg hatches and the nymph comes out.

What Is the Difference Between Cat Flea Eggs and Bed Bug Eggs?

If you’ve ever found a small, white egg in your bedding or furniture, you may have wondered if it was a bed bug egg or a cat flea egg. Bed bugs often lay their eggs in cracks and crevices near their sleeping hosts, making them difficult to spot. What do bed bug eggs look like? Bed bug eggs are 1mm, oval, with a smooth, sticky surface.

On the other hand, you will find cat flea eggs on floors, carpets, cracks on wooden floors, and any place where the cat roams. Unlike bed bugs, cat fleas typically lay their eggs on their hosts, and then the eggs fall off into the environment.

In contrast, cat flea eggs are 0.5mm, oval-shaped, but not sticky. Cat fleas go through a different life cycle then bed bugs. Cat fleas go from Egg ➡️ Pupae ➡️ Larvae ➡️ Flea, whereas the bed bugs go from Egg ➡️ Nymph ➡️ Adult. You will likely not see cat flea eggs; instead, you may see the larvae (worm-like creatures) or adult fleas.

Final Thoughts For – “What Do Bed Bug Eggs Look Like?”

So there you have it. Now you know if you ever wonder what bed bug eggs look like. They are small and oval with a smooth, sticky surface. They may be difficult because bed bugs often lay eggs in cracks and crevices near their sleeping hosts. If you think you may have a bed bug infestation, it is essential to inspect your home for eggs and get professional help to solve the issue. Thanks for reading!