Mosquito Bites vs. Bed Bug Bites

Picture of mosquito

What’s That Bite?

Symptoms from insect bites vary depending on the pest species as well as the individual. Some people have more intense reactions.

In addition, a few pests carry diseases that have serious impacts on human health. Because of these factors, it’s helpful to know characteristics of common insect bites.

Mosquito Bites or Bed Bug Bites?

What Do Mosquito Bites Look Like?
Mosquito bites are common for those spending time outdoors during the summer months. There are ways to determine if these insects are responsible for a bite, but individuals don’t always react the same. In general, bites feature a single, hard bump at the bite site surrounded by puffy, red skin.

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

Picture of bed bug bites

Bites may take as long as two weeks to show on skin. They may even fail to show at all. Bed bugs usually bite sleeping people. Like mosquito bites, appearance can vary. These red welts sometimes appear in lines or clusters.

These pests enter buildings by hitchhiking on:

  • Clothing
  • Luggage
  • Used furniture

Identifying Mosquito Bites vs. Bed Bug Bites

Based on appearance alone, it’s tough to distinguish mosquito bites vs. bed bug bites. The main visual difference is that mosquitoes often leave behind a single, isolated bump.

On the other hand, bed bugs typically occur in groups. Bed bugs hide in the seams and cracks of furniture such as beds and sofas. Look for flat, oval pests about the size of an apple seed. They can also appear as a single bite, resembling a pin prick.

Mosquitoes are flying insects mostly found outside. Since they breed in standing water, properties with drainage issues or water features are most vulnerable.

Mosquito Bite vs. Bed Bug Bite Health Concerns

Bed bugs do not transmit illnesses. Their saliva numbs the victim’s skin so the bite goes unnoticed while it’s happening. Conversely, people can feel mosquito bites as they occur. Unlike bed bugs, these pests can transmit multiple diseases to humans, including West Nile virus.


Because it’s hard to identify a mosquito bite vs. a bed bug bite without the proper experience, home or business owners may accidentally treat for the wrong insect. Those concerned about bed bugs or mosquitoes can call Waltham Pest Services for safe and effective control.

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