Do Bed Bugs Hibernate?

Bed bugs are unpleasant pests to find in your house, but unfortunately, they are widespread across the United States. Bed bugs are also hardy, resilient insects that can bear various conditions, like freezing temperatures. They do not truly hibernate in the same sense as other critters do in response to cold temperatures. You can read here to learn more about bed bugs’ behavior and how to control their infestation.

Do bed bugs hibernate?

Bed bugs do not technically have an engaged season and can be spotted year-round, but they are more active in specific regions and during certain months. They can survive off blood meals, and apart from a reliable nourishment source, they are not picky about their living conditions. Due to this, their behavior is not as exact as seasonal markers of other pests, though some factors contribute to increased or decreased activity.

Diapause

While bed bugs do not generally hibernate, they enter into a dormant state called diapause. Some insects enter diapause when exposed to inappropriate temperature ranges for a prolonged period. 

When the temperature decreases below approximately 60 degrees Fahrenheit, bed bugs slow their heart rates due to their survival. During this condition of reduced metabolic activity, bed bugs can outlast for months without taking food. As a result of diapause, the movement of bed bugs will be decreased in the winter months because of their temporary dormancy. But, most homes are temperature regulated, so bed bugs will not have to enter diapause. 

They are more active the more people move.

Since they are hitchhikers, we can see an increase in infestations during summer and the holiday season. As people travel to their favorite destinations and loved ones, they can shuttle bed bugs from one place to another. Not many decades ago, experts claimed that bed bugs were going to be extinct. When international travel gained popularity in the 80s, bed bugs rose again. Similarly, bed bug activity decreased in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Since bed bugs are active throughout the year, it is essential to stay informed about preventing an infestation. They can be found anywhere, from cheap motels to most luxury hotels. When you travel, you should inspect the bed frame, mattress, and boxspring for signs of bed bugs. Bed bugs hide in tiny crevices and emerge late at night, so you should move quickly as you check your bed. You will notice blood stains, live insects, and little specks of bed bug droppings–and these are the signs you might be staying with bed bugs. If you notice that your room has bed bugs, you should notify the management immediately.