Help! I have bed bugs! 

We get phone calls that sound like this daily. But sometimes, the bugs in question are not actually bed bugs. While this is small consolation-a bug in your bedroom is still a bug in your bedroom-it is helpful to know how to identify the bugs you see to save you time and money. There are five common bugs that are mistaken for bed bugs. 

1) Carpet Beetles-They are 3 millimeters in length, and can damage fabric, carpeting, furniture, and fabric made from animal fibers. They prefer to live outdoors in insect and bird nests, but can easily be transported indoors as well. 

carpet beetles

2) Bat bugs-They look very similar to bed bugs. A key difference is the length of hairs on the segment of the bug just below the head-these hairs are longer on bat bugs. Like bed bugs, these bugs feed off blood. They prefer the blood of bats  but will bite humans as well and will burrow in mattresses and bed frames, leading people to mistaken them for  bed bugs. 

bat bugs

3) Booklice-These bugs are usually colored white to gray and brown and may be confused for bed bugs because they hide under wallpaper and in furniture in areas of high humidity. Booklice eat fungi, cereals, pollen and fragments of dead insects.Their key discerning factor from bed bugs is their length-booklice are 1 to 1.5 millimeters in length, noticeably smaller than bed bugs. 


4) cockroach nymps-Cockroach nymphs are essentially baby cockroaches. They are white when they are  born but then turn reddish-brown, resembling bed bugs. They are most active at night, and hide in cracks and crevices.

cockroach nymph 

5) Spider beetle-They resemble bed bugs because of their form and color; they are dark reddish-brown to black with a shiny round abdomen, similar to bed bugs. Also like bed bugs, they are active at night and in dark locations. They are 1-4.5 millimeters in length and are found in walls, attics, cracks, and crevices. 

spider beetle