How Long Can Bed Bugs Survive Outdoors?

If you’ve ever experienced a bed bug infestation, you know firsthand how much of a nightmare it can be. The thought of these elusive and creepy insects creeping around your home and biting you while you sleep can be enough to keep you up at night. But what about the bed bugs that are outside of your home? How long can bed bugs survive outdoors? In this article, we’ll answer that question and more.

What Are Bed Bugs?

Before we dive into how long bed bugs can survive outdoors, it’s important to understand what bed bugs are. Bed bugs are small, reddish-brown insects that feed on human blood. They are nocturnal and typically feed at night, hiding during the day in small crevices, cracks, and other hiding places around the home.

Can Bed Bugs Live Outside?

While bed bugs are considered indoor pests, they can survive outside for short periods of time. Bed bugs are not adapted to living outdoors, and they are not able to survive in extreme temperatures. However, they can survive for a few days to a few weeks in mild outdoor conditions.

How Long Can Bed Bugs Survive Outdoors?

The survival time for bed bugs outside of their typical indoor habitat can vary based on a number of factors, including temperature, humidity, and access to food sources. In general, bed bugs can survive outdoors for a few days up to a few weeks.

Factors That Can Affect How Long Bed Bugs Survive Outdoors

As mentioned, several factors can influence how long bed bugs can survive outside. Let’s look at some of these factors more closely:

Temperature

Bed bugs prefer a temperature between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, making summer the most optimal season for their survival outside. In colder temperatures, bed bugs can survive for shorter periods of time.

Humidity

Bed bugs require a certain level of humidity to survive. In dry conditions, they will become dehydrated and die quickly. However, in high humidity, they can survive for longer periods of time.

Food Sources

Bed bugs feed on human blood, so access to a food source is crucial for their survival. Without a food source, bed bugs will die within a few days.

Where Do Bed Bugs Go When They’re Outside?

When bed bugs are outside, they will typically seek out places that mimic their indoor hiding spots. This includes areas such as underneath rocks, in bark crevices, or in outdoor furniture.

How Do Bed Bugs Get Outside?

Bed bugs can find their way outside in a few different ways:

  • Human transport – Bed bugs can hitch a ride on people’s clothes or belongings and be transported outside.
  • Animals – Bed bugs can also hitch a ride on animals or their fur.
  • Moving boxes or furniture – Bed bugs can infest boxes or furniture that get moved outside.

What Should You Do If You Find Bed Bugs Outside?

If you find bed bugs outside, it’s important to take action quickly to prevent them from entering your home. Here are some steps you should take:

  • Remove any outdoor furniture or objects that could be infested with bed bugs.
  • Clean any outdoor furniture or objects that you want to keep.
  • Inspect your clothing and belongings before bringing them inside to ensure they are not carrying bed bugs.

Summary

While bed bugs are typically indoor pests, they can survive outside for short periods of time. The exact amount of time they can survive outside depends on a variety of factors, including temperature, humidity, and access to food sources. If you find bed bugs outside, it’s important to take action quickly to prevent them from entering your home.

FAQs

Q: Can bed bugs survive in extreme temperatures?

A: No, bed bugs cannot survive in extreme temperatures. They prefer a temperature between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Q: Can bed bugs survive without a food source?

A: No, bed bugs cannot survive without a food source. They require human blood to survive.

Q: How can I prevent bed bugs from entering my home?

A: To prevent bed bugs from entering your home, inspect furniture and clothing before bringing them inside, keep clutter to a minimum, and vacuum regularly.

References

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