Bedbugs usually cause feelings of dread among people, but for scientists, they serve as a source of fascination. Researchers have discovered that bedbugs are likely to evolve into a new species.
Bedbugs didn’t start out as pests that feed on human blood. Instead, they first fed on the blood of bats found in caves. As humans started making their homes in caves, bedbugs began feeding on them.
When humans started building homes, some bedbugs stayed among them. Over the years, these bedbugs have developed physical traits that are different from bedbugs that feed exclusively on bats.
Bedbugs that feed on human blood have legs that are thinner and longer than the legs of those that feed on bat blood. Since these bedbugs don’t have to hold onto bats hanging upside down in caves, they don’t need short, strong legs.
Bedbugs that feed on human blood have also developed a resistance to pesticides, unlike those that feed on bat blood. However, they also have their limitations. They live for a shorter amount of time if they only feed on bat blood, since their systems have adapted to feeding on human blood.
Scientists believe that bedbugs that feed on human blood will eventually become their own species if they continue developing different physical traits.
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