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UF Study Reveals Bed Bug Feeding Patterns

Bed bugs

Researchers at the University of Florida examined the feeding patterns of bed bugs — and the impact they can have on humans' blood after several months. Their research was published in the journal Medical and Veterinary Entomology.

| October 23, 2012

Researchers at the University of Florida examined the feeding patterns of bed bugs — and the impact they can have on humans' blood after several months. Their research was published in the journal Medical and Veterinary Entomology.

The study shows that bed bugs will have a bigger or a smaller bloodmeal depending on when they last fed. For example, if bed bugs are fed every day, they have 1.5 times fewer instances of eating than those only fed occasionally, researchers found.

Researchers also found that production of bed bug eggs is linked with how much blood the bed bugs were able to consume the week prior.

"Longer and more frequent feedings increased egg production, which would allow a faster growth of bed bug populations," they wrote in the study. "The increase in bed bug populations obtained with more frequent and longer feedings can be the difference between a population that barely survives at a location and a thriving population."

Researchers conducted their study by letting bed bugs feed on chickens (both chickens and humans are known to be great "feeding hosts" for bed bugs).

Download the article at
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2915.2012.01057.x/abstract.
 

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