5 Types of Bugs Commonly Mistaken for Bed Bugs


Insect characteristics vary from one species to another with regard to size, suitable habitat, and food source requirements. Determining the type of bedbug will affect the diagnosis and the type of professional treatment that should be done. If you neglect pest problems in your property, these may lead to prolonged irritation and further skin discomforts, including rashes, itchiness, and allergic reactions. Find out below the 5 bugs that are commonly mistaken for bed bugs.

Bat Bugs

Bat Bug

Bat bugs are often mistaken for bedbugs since they are characterized by longer hairs, brown in appearance, and oval in shape. They grow as long as 6mm or the size of an apple seed, but these pests do not fly like other household insects. Bat bugs do bite, but they do not feed on humans, rather on pets and wildlife animals. Bat Bugs are often encountered where bats are usually found in secluded areas of the property such as the attic, ceiling, storage rooms, and basement floors.

Spider Beetles

spider beetle

One of the most common insects mistaken for bed bugs is spider beetles, characterized by thin legs and antennae covered by hairs. The head is connected directly to the body, and they come in various colors, from pale brownish-yellow to reddish-brown, indicating their growth pattern. Spider beetles look bloated because of their reddish-brown to almost black appearance, which can be mistaken for blood-feeders like ticks.

Not all spider beetles can fly, only a few species. These pesky insects do not bite, but the hairs can cause irritation when in contact. Like termites, spider beetles are found in wooden structures and near food sources. Proper sanitation of the area is necessary to prevent spider beetles from invading your property.

Book Lice

Book Lice

Booklice nearly resembles termites because they appear pale brown or creamy yellow. Their body is generally soft booklice have thin antenna and legs. The appearance of booklice seems segmented since their head and body are separated, but they can grow up to 6mm.

Booklice do not bite in general, but their dead bodies can trigger asthma attacks, especially when in direct contact with dust and other contaminants. Since booklice can easily become dehydrated, these insects are often seen in areas with high humidity, including damp books, wet wooden surfaces, and floorboards. They do not damage wooden structures but may colonize any secluded place.

Carpet Beetles

Carpet Beetle

Carpet beetles are often seen from a wide variety of flowers and shrubs. They usually appear as black with white, red, and orange patterns. The heads of carpet beetles are not obvious when you look from above. However, you will notice a short antenna extending from their body. They are typically small, about 4mm long, in an oval shape.

Carpet beetles may penetrate your house when you bring freshly-cut flowers inside or when they sneak through window sills and cling to any type of fabric, such as curtains and drapes. If carpet beetle infestation is neglected, it may cause dermatitis due to rashes and allergic reactions, although they do not bite at all. Carpet beetles can also enter the property as these notorious insects can fly, particularly during the daytime.



Known as Ctenocephalides felis, fleas almost look like typical bed bugs but are smaller in size, about 3mm or ⅛ inch. Appearing in reddish black color, the shape of fleas is laterally flat and comes in segmented from. Fleas can jump and often feed on pet animals.

Fleas can penetrate the indoor environment when pet animals are brought inside. Fleas often bite on humans, causing severe itchiness at times as well as various diseases. Fleas move from the sleeping bed of the host animals, jumping to beds, carpets, and different fabric materials until they find another suitable host.

Professional Bed Bug Inspection Team in NYC

Keeping your properties pest-free can help improve your daily living comfort. If you own a commercial building or business establishment in New York City, for instance, It is crucially important that your facility is free of recurring pest infestation to avoid inconvenience to customers and tenants. Just using typical pesticides that you can buy in hardware shops is not enough and may even harm you and other people. However, it’s not easy to solve the infestation problem if you don’t know where to start or find the primary source.

You definitely need long-term help from the professional inspectors of First Response Bed Bug Dogs services to find the source of the pest infestation in your area. Our inspectors can accurately identify the type of infestation affecting your property. The entire team of expert inspectors from First Response uses high-quality scent detecting canines trained from a NESDCA accredited facility in New York, ensuring that the exact problem is pinpointed. We are a professional bed bug dog inspection team, giving you comprehensive reports regarding the type of bugs you need to deal with in your home, commercial establishment, and even institutional facilities with no vested interest. Your service contractor’s extermination plan will be more effective if the right approach to the problem is implemented.


1. Are there any other Bugs that look like bed bugs?

Apart from those mentioned above, you may also encounter other insects commonly mistaken for bed bugs, including termites, mites, and cockroach nymphs, and head lice. Each bed bug species has an individual preferred environment where they can lay eggs or colonize. Some bite, and others have the ability to damage building materials such as termites.

2. What can be mistaken for bed bugs bites?

There are some typical household insects that can be mistaken for bed bug bites due to itchiness, skin redness, and allergic reactions that humans often experience. Mosquito bites, for example, cause swelling and itchiness. They bite during dusk while dawn every summer. You can mistakenly identify bed bug bites of body lice, typical fleas, spiders, and ticks. Frequent scratching leads to chafing and often cause bacterial infection once you have neglected the scratch wound. In the case of ticks, they feed painlessly on the skin, and they usually attach themselves to the hairline, ankle, armpit, waistline, and groin.

3. Are Bed Bugs common in NYC?

Bed Bug infestation in New York is one of the most common occurrences because the world’s busiest financial hub is actually overpopulated. Pest infestation is a typical problem in many public areas of New York, including academic institutions, hospitals, apartments, businesses, and even luxury high-rise residences. The worsening pest problem in New York is associated with inclement weather, congestion, city traffic, and lack of open spaces. There are also countless abandoned buildings, historical venues, mass public housing, and industrial zones scattered throughout the metropolitan area that could help contribute to the City’s growing pest invasion.

4. Is New York infested with Bed Bugs?

It is not surprising that the bed bug infestation problem in New York City is serious enough because of the millions of residents, travelers, commuters, and urban dwellers circulating within the metropolitan area. Even the five-star hotels and first-rated commercial establishments are not exempted from the worsening effects of bed bug infestation. The pest control industry has even reported that the bed bug dogs NYC services have increased tremendously over the recent years due to population growth and poor sanitation.