Do Lizards Eat Bed Bugs?
If you have ever had bed bugs or have them now, you will do anything to get rid of them. But are lizards the answer? That is the question that I will be answering today.
Do lizards eat bed bugs? Yes, they do bed bugs. Especially the house lizards (geckos). However, they are not a feasible pest control solution. This is because there is only so much bed bugs or other house pests that they can consume before they are full. And Bed bugs multiply at an alarming rate.
Now that you know that lizards will eat bed bugs, let us delve a bit deeper. What if you want to offer your pet lizard bed bugs, is this a good idea? what can happen to them? What other pests can they eat besides bed bugs? Let’s answer these questions now.
What is a bed bug?
— Niagara Bed Bugs (@NiagaraBedBugs) November 24, 2017
Bedbugs are a type of tiny insect that typically feeds off human blood in the night. They are called bed bugs because they are usually found infesting people’s mattresses and causing irritation and bites during the night.
The bite can cause a number of different health-related issues primarily rashes, blisters or other skin related problems.
The two main species that are known for bed bugs is the well known common bug (Cimex lectularius) or Cimex Hemipterus.
These bed bugs are quite hard to detect because they are really small. Typical size can be between 1 & 7 mm in length. As you can imagine they are very hard to see with the naked eye. Especially if you’re sleeping.
They get around by jumping onto clothing, pets or other household items. They spread by laying eggs and multiplying. If you find them in your house, it’s not necessary due to bad hygiene, it could be just because you live in a highly populated urban area.
Could You Just Have Multiple Lizards to deal With a Bed Bugs Infestation?
In reality, lizards will eat until their bellies are full and then roll over and leave the rest. You may be thinking to yourself, well if that’s the case I’ll simply have multiple lizards to deal with them. You could do this, but then you will have an infestation of lizards spreading droppings and mess all over your place. So for that reason, it is not advisable.
What are the dangers of feeding lizards bed bugs?
If your lizard is left to fend for itself in your house primarily for pest control there is not so much of a concern. However, if you regard your lizard as a pet, then that is different.
If that is the case, it is not a good idea to feed them bed bugs. Reason being, recent research carried out in Vancouver has revealed that they can carry organisms that can lead to bacterial infections.
What other pests do household lizards eat?
You may be happy to know that house lizards do not just eat bed bugs, they will also feed on other pests that may be lurking in your home.
Rats and mice
In reality, as you can imagine, it is unlikely that a small house lizard can deal with a big rat or mouse for that matter. However, they are more than capable of dealing with their offspring. In particular their babies or newborns.
Lizards tend to hang out in dark murky places where rats and mice like to rare their young. This is an opportunity for them to snack on these young mice known as “pinkies” which are an ideal size for them.
They tend to hide in areas where they know the Offspring will be and wait for the mother to disappear before launching their attack.
House lizards like to hang out in cool damp and dark areas which are ideal for cockroaches. This is ideal for them because house lizards love to snack on cockroaches.
Centipedes are definitely eaten by house lizards. Their wriggly movement attracts their attention and they will snap them up without any hesitation. You can expect to see them looking for centipedes.
An example of places that you may find these centipedes within a house is, for example, within wooden fixtures such as wood beams. Especially if the wood is old or worn with some signs of wood rot. Lizards will scale the walls to eat them.
Swarmers are an adult version of termites with wings. You can often find them flying in colonies, hence the reason they earned their name “swarmers”. If lizards are given an opportunity they will gladly lap up these delicious treats.
Mosquitoes are one of their favorite foods. They are notorious for sticking out their tongues and devouring them.
Problems you may have using a house Lizard for pest control
If you are still considering using a Lizard as pest control, to deal with your insect infestation. Let me warn you about a couple of things.
Using a house gecko as pest control, as discussed earlier, can’t really help you. But in addition to this, there are additional undesirable effects, for example, you will start to find lizard droppings hidden behind hard to find areas that could take months to discover.
For example, you could find feces behind an old kitchen cupboard which is rarely moved. This hidden gem could be located right at the back, hard to find.
In fact, you may not notice this stinker for months or longer. Maybe you will only notice when other related problems occur. Such as flies swarming around the feces and adding to your pest problem.
Damaged household devices
You may also notice house geckos will get everywhere, even in your prized electronic devices, which could end up getting damaged.
There have been reports of a particular homeowner who found a lizard electrocuted and stuck within their printer causing it to malfunction and costing them because they had to replace it.
What do house geckos eat in captivity? You will find that house geckos eat a lot of insects in captivity, such as waxworms, silkworms, and cockroaches.
To keep them happy you will need to provide these insects 5 to 6 times a week. In addition to this, you need to make sure that you provide some meal supplementation. Such as a vitamin supplement. This supplement can be quite simply dusted onto their food so that they consume it without even noticing.
However, when you offer them these insects be careful of the sizing. A general rule is, it should be no bigger than the distance between each of their eyes. This is so that they can avoid being choked.
One word of warning though, do not allow uneaten crickets to roam around inside of their enclosure. The problem is, there is a good chance that the crickets will start to bite and nibble on your house gecko and cause problems.
When it comes to their consumption of water, it is important to mist their enclosure on a daily basis. This is because they will not take water from a dish. They expect to lick the water droplets from tree branches and leaves.
Do house lizards eat spiders? Yes, they do they definitely eat spiders. However, they go one step further. they even control the spider’s food sources. As well as eating the spiders, amongst other things, you may even find them eating up the lava of wasps. This helps to control the spider’s population indirectly because they typically eat them.
Do Lizards carry salmonella? Yes, they do, such as the common house lizard. This is quite a common issue and can be spread from casual contact or even through their feces. This can even be spread from contact from the environment that they use, such as the water provided in their enclosure in captivity. For this reason, it is advisable to keep young children away from them, or at minimum, always supervised, because they have bad habits of putting things in their mouth.