What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

What Do Bed Bugs Look Like?

Quickly identify bed bugs and their hiding places.

bristol bed bug image
These Bed Bugs are 4-5mm Long

Bristol's Bed bugs are one of the most difficult insect parasites to find, let alone eliminate. Bed bugs do however like to hide in similar places, and we are going to reveal these to you.

As you can see above, bed bugs are dark brown with a well-digested blood meal inside them, but this varies from translucent, in bugs that haven't fed in a long time and red, for those with a fresh blood meal inside them.

When bed bugs have just harvested fresh blood from you, they take on a more elongated and cylindrical appearance. The Bedbug pictured below was in a bedsit where it had eaten just hours earlier and was engorged with fresh blood.
freshly fed bed bug
A Recently Fed Bed Bug

3 Common Sources Of Bed Bugs

Second Hand Furniture

It might surprise you to discover the number of people willing to buy second-hand bedroom furniture who are oblivious to the bugs they are about to unleash upon their friends and loved ones.

Hollow bed bases are the very worst culprits.


So you've been away for a few days and returned ready to take on the world! Well, the next day the only thing you want to take on is steroid cream for the large lumps on your arms, face and neck, etc.

Oh, and let's not forget the blood-stained sheets, because mature bed bug bites can continue to bleed once the bed bug goes back to its hiding place for a nap.


Yep, just as above, they bring luggage with them. 

5 Of The Best Places To Find Bed Bugs

  1. Behind The Beds Head Board. Especially in the slots of the headboards fixing arms.
  2. Behind and Inside Bed Side Cabinets. Particularly in the back of the cabinets, in the tiny gap where the plywood/hardboard back is fixed to the cabinet
  3. In the joints and slat holders of wooden/metal bed frames. Most metal frames are hollow tube/box construction, and the bed bugs will be inside. You can cook these with a paint stripping gun. Mind the paint though!
  4. Inside Hollow Bed Bases. As mentioned already the fabric covered bed bases with drawers are the single most common and complicated structures in bedrooms that contain bedbugs.
  5. On curtains resting against beds. You need to have a good look at the pleated tops, where the curtains are attached to the curtain hooks.
Remember - any gap thin enough for you to slide a sheet of paper into, is big enough for a bed bug to hide.

What do bed bug bites look like?

If you need more help why not visit our Bristol Pest Control site, to discover more.