Baby Stink Bug vs Bed Bug

Bed bugs appearance might look like that of a stinkbug nymph (baby), but they are world’s apart. Bed bugs are commonly found in areas where there are people, and leave behind spots or brown fecal matter. Stink bugs do not need on human blood, can fly when mature, and can be found throughout any area of the home.

What Are Baby Stink Bugs (Nymphs)?

Stink bugs derive their name from the foul odor they emit from their abdomen if they feel threatened. Adult stink bugs are about ¾” long with legs extended from the side, making them appear even more prominent.

Baby stink bugs (nymphs) look exactly like adult stink bugs but are smaller in size. They have different colors according to the species. Their wings are not functional at birth.

Stink bugs flourish because they have no natural predators to help keep their population under control. They feed on agricultural and home crops, and in case of an infestation, they can cause significant farm losses.

What Are Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) are parasites that feed solely on human blood and other warm-blooded animals, including dogs, cats, and other pets.

Adult bedbugs are tiny, flat, and oval-shaped, about ¼” to 3/8″ long, light brown to reddish-brown. They are six-legged with two antennae and segmented with microscopic hairs that give them a stripped look.

Baby bedbugs (nymphs) resemble adults in shape but are much smaller 1/16″ when they first hatch. They are translucent and look white or very light brown before the feed. After they feed, they can become bright red, fading to brown over time and finally to opaque black.

Bedbugs are normally nocturnal, and you can find them in the dark, hidden spaces. These include mattress seams, bed frames, around furniture, inside cracks and crevices, inside uncovered electricity outlets, behind wallpaper, or any clutter or object near their food source.

Unlike mosquitoes, these blood suckers are not known to spread disease. They can live for many month even without a blood meal!

Stink Bugs vs Bed Bugs Comparison:

Baby Stink BugsBed Bugs
Feeding mechanismThey feed on fruits, vegetables, and other insects.Feed on blood.
AppearanceShield shaped.Flat and round, but before they feed, they may have a flat oval shape.
WingsWell-designed wings that help them fly.They do not fly but have dysfunctional wing pads.
ColorThey come in various colors, including green, red, purple, brown, and black.Reddish-brown or yellow color or baby bedbugs may appear white or translucent color before they suck blood.
Body OdorAdults can release a foul odor when threatened (thus the name!)They give off a sweet, musty smell when there is an infestation but no distinct smell deterrents.
Living EnvironmentThey like light and prefer the outdoors.  In living apartments, they congregate around windows and doors.Prefer dark environments
Body SizeOne-quarter of an inchOne-quarter of an inch, although baby bedbugs can be smaller
Bite differencesUncommon to bite. Painful bites with a possibility of experiencing an allergic reactionItchy red welts also with the possibility of severe allergic reactions

Frequently Asked Questions

Final thoughts

Proper identification of the bugs is the first step towards containment and getting rid of them. While hiring an expert tends to be somewhat costly, it helps save time and frustration in the long run. Professionals will come in handy, especially when you cannot correctly identify the bug or deal with pesticide-resistant ones. 

Article Reviewed By:

Dakota S. MS in Biology

Dakota holds a Masters of Science in biology/biological sciences, with an emphasis on entomology and parasitology. An accomplished researcher and writer, Dakota has completed numerous research papers and published peer-reviewed literature. Notable accomplishments include the study and documentation of new structures not previously known to be fluorescent in Ixodida (ticks).