If you’re wondering which animals will eat bed bugs (Hemiptera), read on to get the details. But you might not want some of these natural bed bug enemies around your home – maybe geckos? or Ants?
So, what animals or insects will eat bed bugs? Well, common bed bug killers include ants (fire, argentine, or pharaoh ants), masked hunters, centipedes, spiders, cockroaches, and lizards such as geckos.
With mattress encasements for bed bugs, it’s possible to watch for bed bugs and also reducing the possible hiding spaces in your box spring or mattress. The bugs undergo metamorphosis – from egg to nymph – it has no larval stage.
- NB: Cats and dogs won’t eat bed bugs – maybe by accident but dogs may assist in searching for bed bugs – canine scent detection.
Details: What Animals Eat Bed Bugs? – Bed Bug Predators
1. Masked Bed Bug Hunter
These Masked hunters are even described as assassin bugs that’ll colonize areas that are dry and warm – your home will be an excellent destination. These flying bugs will measure roughly 17 – 22 millimeters (with some gray or brown).
These bed-bug hunters will mainly hide around dust – the location where their nymph will form. They’ll have that symbiosis association with pigeons and bats – which they take like their food.
The predator masked hunter will eat many insects and bugs such as bed bugs – but it’s not advisable to introduce the masked hunter into the home as a portion of their subspecies may bring disease to humans.
Further, Masked hunters could bite humans when they consider that they’re threatened. They’ll cause a painful bite – comparable to a snake bite. Masked hunters could overrun your home – as advised by entomologists.
So, to both monitor or trap those nasty bed bugs, I recommend using some great bed bug traps – the red and black colors will attract the bugs.
- In summary, the Reduvius personatus will feed on bed bugs – they’re in multiple United States’ regions. Being nocturnal feeders, they’ll attack the bed bugs as they emerge during the night.
Roaches are common animals that you can use to fight those bed bugs in your residence. Cockroaches will mainly settle in the house around areas (the quiet places) like pantries, cupboards, and kitchens.
Roaches are effective bugs against bed-bugs but most people don’t recommend them as the solution for bed bugs menace. Also, they’ll inhabit sewers and other dirty places eating food, garbage, and junk – check quality drain cleaners.
Further, roaches will love dirty homes as they’ll easily get bread crumbs and leftover food – but they won’t be super effective against bed bugs like foggers, traps, and sprays.
Despite that roaches will east the bed bugs, the rate of exterminating them is too slow while the bed bugs reproduce too fast. Also, roaches tend to bite humans and contaminate their food.
- In summary, roaches will predators on bed bugs – as they’ll feed on most things that’ll act like food – but they won’t eat and eliminate the whole colony of bed bugs in the house.
- Thus, it is better to employ chemical bed-bug killers or even engage a professional exterminator to clear the whole colony of bed bugs in your residence and house.
3. Pharaoh Ants
From all the ant species, pharaoh ants are the best documented to kill or attack bed bugs. Further, they’ll draw attention or pinpoint (“give away”) the specific hiding areas of the bed bugs.
The Pharaoh ants consider bed bugs as a great diet – but they’re threatening to humans. The ants will help manage large bed bug infestations – the 1/16-inch workers will be honey-colored.
The ants are fast in reproducing – with a female laying roughly 400 eggs over its whole lifetime. They have distinct trails – and they need humid and warm conditions – and will love fats and sugars.
- Pharaoh ants eat many objects such as bed bugs (plus their eggs) and clothing but will also transmit illness.
Pharaoh ants look yellow-brown and are fast reproducers but will also spread diseases such as dysentery and salmonella – and thus you must be cautious when using them for bed bug control.
4. Red-Imported Fire & Argentine Ants
Fire ants will inhabit sunny and warm areas – while the red-imported fire ants will measure about 1.6 mm – 5 mm. They are known to feed on telephone wires – specifically the rubber insulation.
Their excruciating and potent sting will kill most young animals including bed bugs. The ants’ alkaloid venom will leave white pustules and red bumps – these are very irritating.
On the other hand, Argentine Ants will measure roughly 2.2 mm – 2.8 mm – the invasive ants will inhabit home foundations, ground debris, and moist or damp mulch.
During the cool weather, Argentine Ants will get into cracks and gaps around your house to get shelter – but they’ll also attack and exterminate bed bugs.
4. Thanatus Flavidus Spider
Thanatus flavidus (Philodromidae) is a spider species that are effective in controlling bed bugs – besides heat treatment, fumigation, and pesticides. They’re native to Greece, Ukraine, and Russia.
The legend spider – as described by Time Magazine, cleared the bed bugs infestation that was in Athens, Greece in 1929. They’ll catch the bloodsuckers by their backs to remove their body fluids.
This Thanatus flavidus isn’t toxic to humans – and hence are better suited to be in the house compared to kissing bugs, cockroaches, and ants. Other predator spiders include jumping spider, running crab spider, and the wolf spider.
- Spider bites won’t spread infections to humans and won’t also invade your bedroom.
Bedbugs came back after the prohibition of synthetic DDT pesticides mainly in Europe and the United States – they attack warm-blooded animals and suck their blood.
5. House Centipedes
The House Centipedes are hated by humans but they’ll also eat many invertebrates including cockroaches, bed bugs, termites, and spiders.
The centipedes (that have a body that’s yellowish-brown) are considered disgusting by most people but the house species will eat bed bugs.
These bugs have flattened and long bodies – that’ll go up to1-1/2 inches in length. Each of their body section has a (thread-like, slender, and long) pair of legs – that have some white and black banding.
- The centipedes have well-developed and large eyes – they’re beneficial and harmless to humans but will predate on insects, bed bugs, ants, silverfish, cockroaches, termites, spiders, and No See Ums too.
The thirty legged arthropods measure about 15 centimeters in body length – they’ll hunt bed bugs and cockroaches. They might cause painful and poisonous bites – that look like bee bites.
- House dust mites will also predate on bed bugs besides eating mold, animal and human skin flakes.
Further, geckos will attack and exterminate bed bugs – but the lizards will need special humidity, light, and heat conditions.