Kissing Bug Facts and Disease Information

Kissing bugs (from the Triatominae insect family) are blood sucking insects that are known to attack humans for their food. These pests are sometimes called some names, the most common being “cone-nose bug”, “masked hunter bug” or “Mexican bed bug”. A major reason these insects are called “kissing bugs” is because they tend to bite around the mouth and eye region while you sleep which is definitely pretty creepy (literally). Imagine waking up to an insect perched on your face, I would absolutely loose it! To make matters worse, these pests have the ability to transmit a dangerous disease called “Chagas” that can cause all sorts of health complications and can sometimes even be fatal. Of course, dying is uncommon but it’s definitely worth knowing the danger. In this article you will learn everything you need to know about kissing bugs (click here to skip to the video summary), especially on the steps needed to protect yourself and your family. I encourage you to share this with anyone you know who might be affected by these nasty little insects.

How would a kissing bug hunt you down?

Firstly, these bugs need to find their way into your home. They are usually attracted by lights and the possibility of warmth and shelter from the elements. While it’s not practical to completely seal up your home to keep these pests out, you can make it more difficult for them to get in by caulking (sealing up) cracks, etc.

Secondly, a kissing bug usually locates its next meal by literally using its nose. It is attracted to the carbon dioxide that you exhale when you breathe and since you are not going to stop breathing anytime soon (hopefully), it’s rather difficult to hide from these pests. As previously mentioned, these bugs are also attracted to warm areas so it’s possible that they might just want to cuddle with you while you sleep after having a quick meal (yikes!). The main reason kissing bug bites are often found on the face is because it’s usually the only part of your skin that is showing when you are wrapped up in blankets during the night. However, kissing bugs that prioritize the face are usually found in Latin America, the rest are not so picky and can bite any exposed skin.

What do kissing bugs look like and can they fly?

Image of a kissing bugKissing bugs are slightly smaller than an inch and are completely flat, unless they have recently had a meal of blood. If they have just eaten, they will swell up quite significantly and are easy to catch. As you can see in the picture, these pests are dark brown or mostly black and usually have orange (sometimes even red) markings around the abdomen. These insects also have a rather extended mouthpiece (that they use for feeding) in comparison to the rest of their species.

Speaking of which, it’s sometimes easy to confuse these insects with other pests like the assassin, wheel or stink bug so always double check that you are actually dealing with a kissing bug. If you are unsure, please feel free to leave a comment below this article and I will assist you or, simply ask an expert in your area for proper identification. Unlike fleas, adult kissing bugs have wings that they develop during their life cycle and while they don’t usually make a habit of flying, it does make them fairly mobile, especially when they are hungry.

Where do kissing bugs hide in a home and what are their feeding habits?

These insects are known to start craving blood as the sun starts to go down and are commonly found actively seeking their next meal during this time. While they are not out looking for dinner, kissing bugs can hide themselves in places that are either sheltered or near their primary source of food, like:

  1. Under rocks, bricks, broken tiles, cement blocks, piles of leaves and other garden refuse.
  2. Inside houses (especially under mattresses), garden sheds (usually inside cracks, holes, etc.) and other occupied structures.
  3. Inside dog kennels, chicken pens, rodent nests and other animal living areas.

If you cannot see these pests, don’t presume that they are not there (especially if you live in a high risk area as outlined in the next section). Keep a lookout for their feces (poo) and their eggs. Kissing bug eggs are usually white or slightly pink and will be left in sheltered areas by the females (review the common hiding places that are listed in this article). As for their excrement, you will usually find a combination of white and dark marks on walls, doors and other areas of structures (if there’s an infestation).

Where do kissing bugs live and are you at risk of being bitten?

Close up view of the kissing bugImportantly, kissing bugs (that transmit the disease) are commonly found in South and Central America (even as far down as Argentina). Mexico has also had a number of these pests in the country which also puts a nearby of US states at risk as well, especially in Texas as it’s near the border.

I have had a number of my readers contacting me about the possibility of these insects in the United States so here is the answer. There are approximately 85 kissing bug species in the Americas and there are about 15 kissing bug species native to the United States, some of which have been collected in bedrooms and have evidence of recent blood meals. Additionally, some of the ones that were collected in bedrooms have tested positive for infection with the Chagas agent. However, most North American species don’t normally have the habit of defecating on their hosts while they feed, so there is less chance that a person could contract Chagas disease from one of their bites. The species in Central and South America always defecate on their hosts while feeding and their human hosts contract Chagas disease by smearing the bug feces into the bite site or into their eyes, mouth or nose while sleepily scratching the bug bite. Although our North American kissing bug species do not normally defecate on their hosts, one should always avoid manual contact with these insects when they are present.

If you have suffered from a kissing bug bite (and you have confirmed that its not from another insect, such as a bed bug bite rash), there are a couple of things that you can do to reduce the pain and inflammation (and reduce a chance of infection) before seeking medical attention. Here are a few pointers that The Bug Squad recommends:

  1. Place ice or any cold pack on the affected region to reduce swelling.
  2. Use an antibacterial soap and wash the bite area with warm water.
  3. Reduce itchiness by using calamine cream or sometime similar. It’s very important to resist the urge to scratch as this can leave scarring and actually increase the chances of a bacterial or disease infection.

A quick look at the their amazing life cycle

Do you know what an incomplete metamorphosis is? Well certain insects (like kissing bugs or box elder bugs) have a simple metamorphosis cycle that doesn’t involve a pupa stage. This means they don’t need to “cocoon themselves” (like a caterpillar does before it changes into a butterfly) for a long time to change their body. Although a number of changes can occur between infancy to the adult phase, they are progressive (each time it molts) and happen as the insect is growing up which is pretty damn cool!

Kissing Bug Life Cycle

In the case of a kissing bug, the females are known to lay eggs between June and September and their babies will only hatch after about 1-3 weeks, depending on environmental conditions. When the nymphs (babies) hatch out the eggs, they look fairly similar to the adults but have slightly different coloring and no wings. Based on a little research, it’s estimated that each young insect needs around 5-8 meals of blood before each molt. Over time, they will develop these needed changes (such as wings) as they progress towards adulthood.

Do they carry dangerous diseases and what are the symptoms of their bites?

Unfortunately, kissing bugs and the Chagas disease infections often go hand in hand and this is a fairly serious concern. However, remember that it’s not the saliva (or the blood) that contains the disease (unlike Malaria). The disease is actually contained within their feces (poo) and you will only catch it if the excrement (that has the disease) is placed near an open wound (such as a recent cut or graze), is dropped in your eye (can also be rubbed in with your fingers) or if you swallow it. Some of the symptoms of Chagas disease include:

  1. Diarrhea (does depend on the person)
  2. Adverse skin reactions (such as rashes, hives, itching, swelling of glands, etc.)
  3. Nausea, fainting and shortness of breath (not usually immediate but will manifest after some time has passed)
  4. Inflammation of the heart and kidneys (this would be confirmed by a certified medical expert).

If you encounter any of these symptoms (even if it’s not from Chagas), please contact a medical practitioner immediately as this website is not a source of medical advice. If you think your symptoms may have been caused by this disease, be sure to mention this to the doctor. If you live in a high risk area, it might be worth your while to get yourself checked out from time to time as not everyone who contracts the parasite gets sick immediately and its best to catch it in its early stages. Research shows that it may take years before it takes taking a toll on your health and it’s estimated that over 12500 people die from it each year alone!

Important warning for handling these insects

If you have found what you think is a kissing bug, it’s very important that do not touch it with your bare hands. The Center for Disease Control recommends that you place it in a secure container (you can freeze it to make sure that the bug dies) and take it to the closest governmental health department for identification (as its rather serious if a potential infestation is at hand, steps will need to be taken, people will need to be warned, etc.). If the insect was seen walking on any surfaces, it’s recommended that you wash them with a solution of bleach and water to make sure that any bacteria is killed.

How to get rid of kissing bugs quickly and safely

Proactive ways to keep them out: As usual, it’s always a good idea to take preventative action (if possible) when dealing with kissing bugs. Here are a few recommendations from The Bug Squad:

  1. Seal up any holes, cracks or openings that may allow insects to get into your home, even when the windows and doors are closed. If there is a large amount of insect activity in your area, it might be useful to buy an insect screen net for your windows as this will allow the pleasant breeze to come in but will also keep the nasty pests out!
  2. Keep on the lookout for their presence (feces, small blood stains, etc.), especially in your living areas.
  3. To protect your pets, keep them inside as they can also be infected by the Chagas disease if they eat one of these insects.
  4. Keep your yard free of their hiding areas. As previously mentioned, piles of leaves, garden refuse, etc. are prime targets so clear them away.
  5. If you are traveling or live in a region that has a high risk, you can also use things like bed nets to protect yourself from pests that may find your sleeping body interesting while you are sleeping.
  6. Richard Fagerlund, a well respected pest expert has recently suggested that getting rid of pack rats and their nests (middens) is another good way to reduce the chances of these insects invading your home.

How to get rid of kissing bugs: I have had a number of individuals asking about kissing bug traps. From my experience (and research), bait based traps do not work for getting rid of these pests. However, if you have found a trap that you have had success with, please drop me a mail (or a comment below) and I will take the necessary steps to confirm the product and update this section of the guide.

  1. As usual, I always recommend giving the entire home a good clean (vacuum, etc.) when dealing with a pest infestation. Since these insect can carry a dangerous disease, it’s worth mopping the floors (and wiping surfaces, etc.) with a combination of bleach and water (as previously mentioned).
  2. Use a synthetic pyrethroid spray (always seek professional advice before using it as it can be rather dangerous) to kill these pests in your home. Just make sure you don’t use them near people and definitely keep them away from the bedroom where you sleep. After posting this article, I have since been encouraged by a few pest experts to let my readers know that its best to seek some non-toxic sprays first, if they are available in your area.
  3. Contact an exterminator in your local area. There are a number of pest control experts that you should be able to contact in your local area. Call them and get a quote for the job.

Interesting Facts to Share with Your Friends

  1. Kissing bugs can fly to find their next meal using wings they gain at adulthood.
  2. These pests know how to kill bed bugs and actively them seek out for their last blood meal. However, kissing bugs are definitely not a valid solution for bed bug control in your home ;)
  3. Kissing bugs can be rather brave. One study showed that as soon as someone put their finger near this insect, it charged at them, looking for blood.
  4. These insects transmit a disease called Chagas that can lie dormant for years before suddenly causing major health complications.
  5. It’s estimated that about 18 million people are infected with the Chagas disease annually, many of which do not even know!

In conclusion, kissing bugs are a rather dangerous insect that can potentially spread a fatal disease (Chagas) in their feces by biting you. Although they are native to Central America, these insects are able to travel far distances and there have been a number of sightings in North America and other places. Your best protection against these bugs is to be proactive and clear away or fix areas where they may hide for warmth and shelter. If you are bitten by one of these pests, I highly recommend that you seek medical attention and mention that you have had a recent bite from a kissing bug to make sure you receive the help you may need. I hope you enjoyed this article (please consider sharing it with your friends) and I look forward to hearing from you in the comment section below.

Summary Video For This Kissing Bug Guide

Natasha Anderson

Natasha Anderson

Hi there! My name is Natasha and I would like to thank you for reading this guide. If you have any concerns or would like to ask a question about this article, I encourage you to leave a comment below and I will provide a reliable answer within about 24 hours. Remember, all this information is provided at absolutely no cost and if you have enjoyed what you have read, please show your appreciation by sharing this post on your favorite social network below. I look forward to helping you!
Natasha Anderson
Natasha Anderson
Please note that the contents of this guide is for informational purposes only. If you would like to receive professional advice to diagnose a pest control related problem, please contact your local exterminator or certified expert immediately.

Comments

  1. Paul M. Bret says:

    I thought it was a very informative article!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Paul! Awesome stuff, I am glad that you enjoyed it and hope to see you back again soon :)

      • kime turner says:

        Ive seen these in my garden vegetable garden by the hundreds sitting on the fruit. I beleive. this is them. I live in Ga. Do they leave two side by side little bite marks on the skin ? Not after the original bite ? Is there any pictures of the bite marks available ?

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Kime, I am not too sure about the bite marks to be honest, perhaps a little Google search will find you some examples :)

      • Ashley says:

        Can you please tell me if this is a stink bug or kissing bug? I am so nervous after reading this because I have seen several in my house. Please help asap!

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Ashley! It doesn’t look like a kissing bug :)

        • Marcella says:

          We have had these nasty bugs that look the same hopefully im just paranoid. Im in IL. The stink when you kill them. How do i know if its the same? They have the orange markings but the mouth area doesn’t look at long as pictures ive seen

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Marcella, the only way you can be sure is if you take it to your local government offices for inspection.

        • Ruby Jean Buzzell says:

          I think this is a kissing bug in gray maine. But looks like withe or gray marks instead of Orange or red. Where can I send u a picture?

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Ruby! You can upload it somewhere and send me a the link via the contact us form on this blog. Hope that helps!

      • Jasmine says:

        Kind of worried. Was driving home and squished a bug crawling around on my back. It had orange markings kind of bright and looked like a beetle and now I’m worried. Its 4:30 pm here so would they be out early?

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Jasmine, they can be around anytime, if you are in an area where they are commonly found.

      • Mandy says:

        I am concerned because for months i been waking up with very itchy welts, last month my eye was swollen with more marks on my face and it appears that every time i wake up i have more. It got so bad I went to the hospital but they said it looked just like an allergy however my family doctor said i had marks on my side that could be lime disease but they wasnt sure and just gave me an antibiotic.

        My hearts been beating fast and hurting almost like an early heart attack signs, and i feel so sick not even the antibiotic is helping. i dont know what to do since i had both the hospital ER and my physician look at me and i cant find any insects anywhere except stick bugs sometime.
        I also been having trouble breathing and my stomach and lowe backs been hurting me more. I am totally unlucky. :/

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Mandy! I highly recommend that you book yourself in and demand to be treated, those symptoms (while they might not be from a kissing bug), are serious. Please go as soon as possible and get sorted out, don’t tell them about the insect on your next visit and explain your situation. Hope you get better soon!

    • Becca says:

      I was bitten by this bug in the back of my leg. It was hidden inside my jeans and when I put them on the bug bit me. Is this a kissing bug and should I seek medical attention?

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Becca! There is a (very) small chance that it was actually carrying the disease, but check with your doctor if you want to be certain.

    • ji. says:

      I have killed 4 of these kissing bugs in the last week.the color of these kissing bug was soild black with a red line around the body.

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Ji, thanks for the heads up, appreciate the comment!

    • Lauren Nichols says:

      I am sure I have found one of these bugs. Can you assist me in identification?

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Lauren, sure thing. Please upload the image somewhere and send me the link using the “contact us” page on this blog.

    • Aftin says:

      I live in Washington state, I found two Kissing bugs in my son’s bedroom window.

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Aftin, thanks for the heads up, that is not good :O

  2. Jeff Huffman says:

    Interesting. As if bedbugs weren’t bad enough!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Indeed! Its a good thing that they are not a global problem otherwise I think I would permanently sleep inside an insect net lol. Thanks for leaving a comment Jeff, have a good one and hope to see you back again soon :)

  3. FA says:

    Wow! I’ve never even heard of this dangerous insect.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey FA! Well lets hope you never get to see one either ;) You should be fine unless you live in their native regions but always keep an eye out for them. Thanks for leaving a comment, cheers!

  4. Stephen Gould says:

    Very interesting article I will pass onto some colleagues, well written Natasha thank you for sharing.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Stephen! Much appreciated and thanks for your kind words! I will try my best to keep these free guides coming, time permitting of course ;)

  5. mike says:

    i found them here in BKK thailand too. they look just the same. is it possible?.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Mike! Based on my current knowledge, I dont think that there are kissing bugs (or at least based on official reports) in Thailand. However, I will be more then happy to take a closer look if you would like to send me a picture of it. :)

      • mike says:

        Thanks for your reply. Yesterday this bug came to my house again I have not seen it for years. It flew away so I will just keep an eye out for it in the future.

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Pleasure Mike, let me know if you have any further signs of these pests and we can take further steps if needed :)

  6. lauren says:

    I have a photo of a big my friend was bitten by and we would like to know if it may be a kissing bug? !

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Lauren!

      Drop me and email using the contact form and I will check it out for you :) Alternatively, please visit your closest governmental health department as they will be able to assist you further. Cheers!

  7. Chris says:

    Hi Natasha,
    I live in Cave Creek AZ and have found one kissing bug in my bath tub, an adult on an exterior window seal, and a nymph under a covered patio fan. How do I know if it is truly kissing bug and how many counts as an infestation?

    Thanks,
    Chris

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Chris! While it may not be termed as an “infestation”, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take immediate steps to alert your local authorities. They will be able to identify it for you or you could always send me a picture of it. Hope this helps!

  8. Levi Ellis says:

    I live in Utah and I recently got bit several times and it is sooo itchy and has given me rash all over. I have been hunting the internet and my room for any sign of what could’ve caused it. I finally found a bug, but only found 1. And sure enough, it is identical. It like has a stinger coming out of its face. But I only found 1, is that normal?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Levi! If it is a kissing bug, they dont necessarily have to arrive in large groups. In other words, its normal to only find one or a couple instead of a couple hundred for example. However, as I usually recommend, get it properly identified before panicking or anything.

  9. Margaret says:

    When I was a child in the 1940′s, we lived in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada’s in California. My mother was bitten by a kissing bug and nearly died.
    They are easy to identify.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Margaret! Thanks for your personal experience, I am glad to hear that she didnt pass away so I suppose thats a positive point. But yes, they are fairly dangerous (if they carry the bacteria) and not to be messed around with.

      • Tim says:

        I was bitten back in 1991 and went into anaphylactic shock. That’s when when I learned that 30% of the population are allergic to this bug. Just thought your readers might want to know this. If you’re allergic their bite can be fatal.

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Tim! Thanks for the valuable info, really appreciate it!

  10. Jamie says:

    I live in northern Nevada near Reno and we have a huge problem with these kissing bugs. we had a pile of leaves and old mulch piles outside of a rental that were never cleared by the previous tenants and they breed in these piles. IM FREAKED OUT that when we try to move these piles we will get bit. There are hundreds of them outside our house. Do we get an exterminator to come spray and if so will it make us sick to pick up the piles after they have been sprayed??? Help

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jamie! Getting an exterminator in would be your best bet, hit me up if you want a couple free quotes :)

  11. Andrea Johnson says:

    We live near San Diego, about 20 miles above Mexico, and over the years, we have seen them in our house probably a dozen times. Both my husband and myself have been bitten. I found one this evening on the inside stairs. That is what brought me to look for information on them. The first time I saw one in our house, I had been bitten. I put it in an old film container and took it to the department of agriculture in San Diego to have it identified, and in about a week they sent me information on it. We live right next to an ecological reserve, and there are many woodrat nests in there, and they seem to like living in their nests. Husband has a large scar on his forehead from a bite he got from one 10-15 years ago. The one I found tonight has been flushed down the toilet. Just sharing my thoughts, thanks!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Andrea! That is hectic, thanks for sharing that info with us.

    • Summer says:

      I live in east county of San Diego. in 2014 My husband started waking up in the morning with big welts on his arms and legs from bites. two week later we found the kissing bug and he went into full on allergic reaction. His whole body started swelling up. He probably would have died if we hadn’t gotten him to the hospital. Now its a year later and he was just bitten again! He is afraid to sleep in the house anymore so we set up a tent in the back yard. Hoping to move back into the house in October after the bugs season. I have terminex spray our house every three months. they sprayed about 20 days before his last bite. Hate those nasty beetles!!!

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Summer! That is pretty hectic, maybe you can get some netting for the bed itself? That will keep the insects out, I have seen them used in Africa.

        • Summer says:

          Great idea, I will look into it, thanks

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Pleasure!

  12. Kay says:

    Hi Natasha,
    I believe I have a kissing bug infestation as I have found them in my bedroom and bed, I believe one got in through a worn window screen at the front of the house. They have bitten me & my husband, my husband had a lot of really large welts like a mosquito bites on his shoulders and I didn’t at first but now I have a couple,. I did what you said to do, cleaned & vacuumed the room, took the beds apart, I found numerous babies in the dust ruffle and washed everything in hot water with a bleach after vacuuming all the bugs I could see off, it was unbelievable and disgusting. We had no idea they were even there but we keep our bedroom pretty dark and they hide really well. What made us aware of them is I found one when making the bed that was bloated with blood (unknown to me) but soon discovered that when I picked it up & it popped blood all over my finger!.

    We are calling an exterminator on Monday to come spray for them, as I have tried everything to get rid of them but we keep finding a few.

    My question is how long does it take them to grow to full size? I know the eggs take 3 weeks to hatch but on average how long is it between each stage of development before they get wings? Also does the female die after laying the eggs or just fly away? Does she lay eggs in more than one place? And on average how many eggs do they lay? As we are trying to figure out when one got into our house to lay the eggs as we have not seen any adults. We do have chickens and a hen house, can they spray the hen house without hurting the hens?

    I did take 3 dead ones (I sprayed them with Raid) to our local AG extension in Kaufman, Tx but haven’t heard from them. Then I read they can’t test them if you put them in something like alcohol, so I have since captured 5 more live ones to take to them so they can test for the Chagas disease.
    Any help and information you can give me would be appreciated.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kay! It can take a couple weeks to reach maturity. As for the each stage of the life cycle, I don’t know off the top of my head but the female doesn’t die after laying eggs. The exterminator should be able to treat your home safely, even with hens. Let me know how it goes :)

  13. alina says:

    Hi there, I live in Vancouver, Canada, on a high rise building (9th floor) and to our horror we’ve had removed from our apartment at least 8 of those little monsters, and to make matters worse we have a toddler at home and would hate it if she gets bitten, what would you suggest?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Alina! I suggest that you get your apartment checked by a professional, can’t have those creatures running free in your home.

  14. Margaret says:

    Would sprinkling borax under homes , traval trailers and around homes prevent the bugs from crossing over the surface if they don’t fly in of course” I know that borax kills fleas and roaches so maybe this would kill them to if they walked through it? And if so would they produce any toxins in the air near are under the homes?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Margaret! I havn’t tried but should help a bit. Let me know if you have any success with it :)

  15. Taylor says:

    Hey I believe I just found one of these bugs in my bathroom this morning. I caught it with a small container and lid. It’s now in my freezer. The only thing different about this bug is its body. I’m trying to get in touch with someone who knows a lot about them. Everything is the exact same like the pictures but the body is thin and flat but like a yellow color. But the legs head antenas are the exact same. How do I know for sure if it’s one of those nasty bugs?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Taylor! You best bet would be to take it to a local outlet to be examined.

  16. Ashley says:

    I have a lamp on my nightstand which is right next to my bed, I put in a florescent bulb and for a few months noticed something flying around the lamp at night. Honestly i didn’t think anything of it just thought it was a mite or something, then i started noticing these bugs that almost look like box elders crawling on me in bed i would shake them off and they would disappear i wouldn’t be able to locate them. This went on for awhile until finally i noticed these bugs on my nightstand and on my lamp, they can fly they resemble a box elder bug without the orange markings. I disposed of them but am frightened at what they might be they are either kissing bugs or assassin bugs.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Ashley! I would need to see a pic to make a final conclusion but don’t over stress, maybe just visit your local governmental health department for identification. Let me know how that goes, wish I could help you more!

  17. Vicki says:

    Hello. My son was bitten a few years back by what I believe was an Eastern Kissing bug. He was one of the unfortunate as it sent him to the ER with severy allergy. (I found the bug in his covers so was able to ID it). Because of the severity of his reaction, I also had him tested for Chagas, which was negative. Today I found what I believe is a Western kissing bug in our house. Is it possible to have both types in one area? We live in Texas. Thanks for your informative website!!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Vicki! I havn’t personally experienced that but I suppose it is possible. I highly recommend that you take it to be inspected, just to be sure. Let me know, I am rather interested to hear their response :)

  18. katrina paull says:

    Hi natasha. My boyfriend found a kissing bug in his house a week ago. It was in his upstairs bathroom. We are in ohio. He has an exterminator coming tomorrow. But we have the dead bug sitting on the window sill. Could you identify it or who do I call about it? It looks exactly like the pictures with orange on it.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Katrina! The bug guy should be able to identify it for you. Otherwise, based on your description, certainly sounds like a kissing bug.

  19. Laken says:

    Do these bugs put out a chemical like Oder?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Laken! Not to my knowledge.

  20. Delores says:

    A couple of nights ago I killed two of these bugs. Since I never saw anything like this before, I looked up in a book. Found the name of Kissing Bug & proceeded to the computer for further information. We live in the area of Kingman AZ at about 4200 feet. It is the first time I have ever encountered any thing looking like that. We keep a clean house, and vaccum weekly. We do not spray, since we have a dog, and 2 cats, 22 laying hens outside. Is there anything else I should know about these bugs? Should I ever get another, where would I take to confirm what type of bug it is? Thank you for the information supplied, Delores

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Delores! The article covers everything you need to know :) Your local state should have a dedicated outlet for that kind of stuff, sorry I don’t know the name off hand.

  21. JessieYvonne says:

    Thank you for this article! I’ve seen these bugs multiple times in South Central Texas. As a girl, I was half bitten by one. My friend and I decided to sleep outside on the trampoline (no tent, coverings, etc., just a blanket. We were country kids!). As I was falling asleep, I felt a painful stab in my cheek. I opened my eyes to see a kissing bug crawling away. We quickly went inside after and I’ve been on the lookout for these things ever since. They give me the CREEPS!! Since then, I’ve found them in cat and dog bedding…Didn’t know about the feces and Chagas bit. Thank you for sharing.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey! It’s a pleasure! Yeah they are nasty insects, flipping hate them!

  22. Syuib says:

    Dear Natasha,

    First of all, thank you for your contribution! All your articles are very well written and informative.

    I woke up with eight bug bites this morning, all of them on the right side of my body (6 on arm, 1 under arm and 1 on the leg).

    I seem to have been bitten by this kind of bug for over a month, without ever noticing what exactly bit me. So when i found the bug, i got all enthusiastic, and ended up smashing it with my flip flops. As soon as I see fresh, red blood coming out of the bug, I am sure this is the one that has been biting me all this time. I also took a picture of it, and kind of hoping you would help me confirm if it is indeed a kissing bug.

    I have experienced big, red and very itchy bumps, just like mosquito bite marks, but far bigger, cover wider area, hard and warm when touched. Sometimes i can feel pain as well, like the kind of pain you have when something is swollen. Out of the information I provided, can I assume that this is the kissing bug’s doing?

    I have had over twenty bites all over my body over the past month or so. Some have completely healed but some are pretty persistent and they get itchy again over time. All of them leaves dark spot/area where the infection is. Do you think I should probably go to the doctor or have my blood checked for any potential bacterial infection? Because the more I google it, the more terrifying the Chagas disease sounds. Also, I have contacted a local exterminator to come and survey the house because I believe there must be more of them kissing bugs hiding in my room, or even my house.

    Hope to get a response from you, thank you for your attention and sorry for the very long post.

    Regards,

    Syuib

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Syuib! It’s a pleasure, glad you like them! I wouldn’t jump to conclusions, unless it looks like a picture of a kissing bug, its probably something else. Yes, I highly recommend that you go see a medical professional if the itchiness or the bites are not disappearing, even if it’s for your own piece of mind :) What did the exterminator say?

      • Syuib says:

        Thanks for replying :)

        It was indeed a kissing bug, it was identical to the ones I see on the internet. Unfortunately the exterminators dont really have any experience handling these bugs so they just looked for holes and shut them completely to ensure no bug is getting in anytime soon. I might try to put some wire mesh to cover my window though. And Im definitely seeing a doctor to get rid of the bite marks.

        Anyway, I’ll stop before this gets too long again. Have a good day!

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Syuib! Thanks for the feedback, hope you get it sorted!

  23. megan says:

    I found 2 bugs flying around in my room in the past week or so that look like a kissing bug but are completely dark they don’t have any yellow or red markings on them. We live in Wisconsin and I’m not sure how common they are here.. I did take a picture of the bug if you could tell me if that’s what it is I would appreciate it

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Megan! Sure thing, send it over :)

  24. Cj says:

    I live in Hubbard, Ohio. Me amd my wife habe over 15 bites each from kissing bugs. We just figured out what type of bug was biting us after being bit over 1 month now. We found two of them in our bed seem. CRAZINESS

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Cj. That is crazy, go and have them checked out locally to ensure they are not carrying disease.

  25. liz wood says:

    I just killed what I believe to be a kissing bug here in michigan. I have a picture and was wondering if you could check it out to see if you would agree that’s what it is?! Any help would be appreciated!

    Liz

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Liz! Sure thing, send me an email and I will look at it.

  26. seth says:

    Hi I live in west valley city ut, I have recently moved into a house and the yard was at best to say filthy not bin cleaned in years!! My question is i have killed 4 bugs that are identical to those on your in your pictures. Only one thing is different that is they are straight black one looked slightly dark gray is this a kissing bug ? Also was just around a inch in length. Thanks

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Seth! It might be yes, I will have to see a picture. I suggest taking it to be examined :)

  27. Ashby says:

    I found a bug that looks to be similar in the nymph stage but cant tell if its a wheel bug or a kissing bug. It could be a different type of assasin bug thought. Could i send you a picture to try to get your opinion since they all look similar?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Ashby! Sure thing, drop me a message via the contact form and I will look at it.

  28. Mary says:

    Hello,

    I do believe I have one, just one, Masked Hunter bug in my basement apt. I cannot see any bed bugs, and would not know why I would get any. But I did buy new bedding from Ikea, washed it and put it on my bed. I am so scared now to sleep at night! My finances are so limited and so calling an exterminator is not an option. Is this something I can ignore? (I removed the little fella and put him outside humanely.) Please help me if you would be so kind. I do have a picture…

    Thanks, Mary

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Mary! If you just found the one, don’t worry about it. Just keep an eye on the situation :)

  29. Eleonora Perez says:

    Do calling an exterminator to will work?
    I can’t explain the bites on my face, it happens only on my room so I moved to another one.
    Your article is very informative, I am from Central America and I remember my father checking our beds before going to sleep.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Eleonora! An exterminator will definitely help, I will drop you an email with some details.

  30. Nicole says:

    We live in the mountains of Santa Barbara, ca. My husband got bit by what looked like a kissing bug. The only thing was it was all black. He feels fine no itching or swelling etc. yesterday he found two on the floor in the house. Does it sound like the kissing bug? We called our cities disease control no one has heard of the bug or disease. Thank you. Website is awesome too and helpful.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Nicole! I would have to see an image, doesn’t sound like it though. Send it to me via the contact form.

    • Mai says:

      Olive view in the San Fernando valley has an extension of UCLA. I have sent one bug to them after getting bitten it came back negative for the parasite. This year I have found two. Today this one must have feasted on one of the dogs because when I killed it there was fresh blood. I live in the Santa Monica mountains west of Malibu creek state park. My previous bites have been very swollen and itchy. If you can donate blood the Red Cross screens for chagas. A good way to find out if you’ve been infected and give some blood. The ucla extension is a specific study of chagas. They sent my captured bug to Davis.
      The scariest part is if chagas is contracted the cure is a chemotherapy like treatment.
      Horribleness

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Mai! Hectic, I hope that you never get Chagas. Thanks for sharing your experience, I am sure that Nicole appreciates it. Cheers!

  31. Concerned says:

    Not sure if I should worry. Before I read this site I was itchy. Now I’m itchy and scared. Did some spring cleaning and found 10+ of these bugs and just killed them with my fingers after I took a pic. Scared part is I have plenty of open wounds on my body do to other medical issues and I know these pests were exposed to my open wounds more than once(killed them with my fingers that have open wounds). They were all babies according to your website pics. If you get a chance email me if I’m stressing for nothing out should I get a blood test. Thank you.. ps how do you upload a pic? Where is contact form to upload?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi there, yes send me a message via the contact form and I will reply, to which you can send me the pic. I wouldn’t worry too much, a very small percentage of them have the bacteria.

  32. JD says:

    Great, I’ve seen multiple of these damn things in my room, never knew what they were… I just squish them, but now after finding out what they are I’m freaking out….I hate bugs

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi JD! That’s not good, maybe get some netting for your windows to keep them out.

  33. Tasha says:

    My friend at work got bit twice last year and had an anti-fa lactic shock. She got swollen all over her face and arms. Guess what we just found one crawling on her shirt at work today. Praying that it didn’t bite her

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Tasha! Wow that is hectic, I hope not as well!

  34. tahnee says:

    Hi Tasha, Found kissing bugs in my bedroom. Called an exterminator and he said he would come out and just spray 2 rooms and just on the corners because they crawl along the baseboards. He then said he would spray the outside of the house and do it again in two weeks using pyrethin spray. this does not seem right and not even do bathrooms. Can you use bleach water on Pergo floors? Do I need a different exterminator?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Tahnee! I dont think you can use bleach water on your floors to be honest but I am not expert on that. I suggest getting a few other quotes, not sure why that exterminator would say that.

  35. Preston says:

    My son got bit by one tonight. I am freaked OUT! My skin has not slipped moving. How can I send pictures. We are in Georgia. Is this a known area for them?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Preston, I have sent you a PM, check your email.

  36. Steve says:

    Hello. I just had my 2nd trip to the ER because of this evil spawn from hell bug. Major anaphylaxis. I don’t know what to do about preventative measures. We live in the wooded foothills in northern California. I’ve done everything I can. At a total loss.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Steve, start by installing netting and calking your home so that they cannot get inside, sorry for your trauma :(

  37. jesse delacruz says:

    Hi Natasha…I was bitten about 2 years ago by an unusual bug that I found in a tree trunk… I saw the bug but did not pay much attention to it until now that I have identified it.. its been two years now and I cant remember if I had any symptoms ..is it too late to take a drug treatment (benznidazole or nifurtimox.)

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jesse, honestly, even if it was, 2 years down the line, you should be fine. Go and chat to your doctor if you are still worried :)

  38. Marc Garcia says:

    Hi there, I was bundling up some tree branches and limbs I cut down from a few days before and I was bitten by one of these. I just now realized it because of the recent news talking about it here in Texas. I will admit I was in a bit of pain from the swelling. I’m am very concerned and hoping it wasn’t carrying the disease.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Marc, maybe just go and see a doctor, not worth the anxiety if you don’t.

  39. Vanessa wojo says:

    Hi! I found – what I just learned was – a kissing bug crawling in the outside of our garage! We sprayed a bifenthrine (spelling?) pest spray – but now I’m worried that I need to do a thorough cleaning of the whole area be a use it sounds like the scary disease stays in their feces ?!? Any suggestions? Should we spray again, clean the whole area…. I have 3 small children so I’m in a bit of a panic. Thanks!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Vanessa, sorry for the delay, yes just spray again or get an exterminator to help you!

  40. Pamela Bateman says:

    Thank you for the informative information. A little scary bug but it is nice to have this info. Thank you Natasha

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Pamela, it is a pleasure!

  41. Lynn Taylor says:

    Excellent site, thank you! I live 32 mi. NE of Denver and for 2 years now have periodically found a few what I thought were box elder bugs each fall, but they didn’t look quite right; legs too long, orange or red markings too different, etc.

    Last week I am pretty sure that I was bitten near my mouth. Then yesterday I flipped on the bathroom light in early dusk to find what I am 98% certain was a kissing bug crawling on the edge of my bathtub. Without thinking to capture him, I quickly raised my boot and exterminated him. I was surprised to note w trail of blood as it was significant. It confirmed for me that I am not dealing with box elder bugs.

    I have a HUD house with old siding in poor condition. Could they be hiding under there? Do you think it is time I called in an exterminator? I am definitely having some anxiety around sleep, as I already have health issues from a near-fatal wreck in 2000, when I was rear-ended at high speed by a lumber truck. A PM would be appreciated. Thank you for your time.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Lynn, I suggest you get that exterminator, probably would give you some peace of mind (which is very important hehe)

  42. Rebecca says:

    Hi! I live in Kentucky and on the news the other night they told us to watch out for these kisser bugs. Today on my lunch I saw one that looked like a adult female kisser bug on my Curtian in the livingroom. My fiancé killed it and now it’s in the trash so I have no proof of what it looked like but what do I do?! I’m so scared of bugs!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Rebecca, if you see another, just ping me and I will send you a reasonable exterminator that is nearby to your location.

  43. Ashley says:

    I live in northeast Ohio and this evening around 7PM I came home went into my kitchen to open the fridge and felt something on my hand and I believe it was a kissing bug. I flung it onto the floor and stomped on it with my foot.
    It looks exactly like the photos with the orange striping around the body I’m not sure if I was bit but I’m worried there are more and I don’t know what to do next. Please help

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Ash, rather be safe and go tell your local doctor, they can easily test and put your mind at ease :)

  44. Lisa says:

    I have found 6 that look like baby kissing bugs and would like to know if diatemacious earth would work to kill them. Food grade DE would not harm my pets or chickens.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Lisa! I suggest just squashing them, no need for DE unless you have something like fleas, bedbugs, etc. If they are infesting your home however, let me know and I can make some suggestions.

  45. Elizabeth Cortez says:

    Thank you for your article. I have kissing bugs on my porch and God knows where else in my home. We also have rodents which our landlord has ingnored and we have not been to trap or kill. I am scared to freeze because I’m afraid of the bacteria.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Eli, maybe ask him to get an exterminator? Will PM you.

  46. Elena says:

    Hi , I believe I might have a kissing bug problem, we seen my daughter wake up with many bites on her legs, really bad , we thought it was bed bugs and got her a new mattress. We started spraying alcohol every day all around the house then vacuuming, it seem to have worked for a week or two. Then one day in the living room I seen one kinda jump from my couch to the draps I spryed alcohol and put in a container. A week latter another one came out ,after I got that one it seemed to be fine . Then a month latter once again I started getting bitten and my daughter again this time smaller bumbs put same irritation and discomfort. I’m about to get get up and leave my house plz if anybody knows anything to help .

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Elena! I recommend you get an expert in to help you, there are plenty affordable ones in the California area. Will PM you.

  47. DOUG says:

    SO WHAT IS THE RANGE OF THESE INSECTS. I LIVE IN MICHIGAN AND ITS LIKE WINTER HERE. AS I WAS SITTING AT MY DESK A FEW MINUTES GO A “BUG” FLEW UP AND LANDED ON MY LAMP. I LOOKED AT IT GOOD AN IT SURE LOOKED LIKE A WINGED BUG, IS THAT POSSIBLE?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Doug! It’s unlikely to be a kissing bug considering your location but anything is possible I guess. PM me a pic and I will take a look.

  48. will cheaney says:

    I have a pic of such bug . But not able to upload, so my question would be can or do they change color to match the environment? The shape is identical to the pic shown though it is a medium gray in color with a light gray flooring, they are everywhere where I work. We are out side out town surrounded by cow pastures.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Will. No they don’t, I received your pic via email, hopefully you are all sorted now. Let me know if you are having an infestation with that pest though because that would still need to be dealt with.

  49. Chelsea says:

    I just found what I think is one in my bathroom, but it put off a chemical smell as well.. Its not a stink bug.. During the summer we kill about 5 a day.. This was large and longer legs.. Can I send you a picture to confirm?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Chelsea, sure thing, just use the contact us form :)

  50. Larien Kearns says:

    I live in ky have found three of these bugs in my home and don’t know if there kissing bug or box elder. I’m a liver transplant patient and concerned re: risk of infection.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Larien, if the bug looks like the images on this page, I suggest you take further steps, I can organize an exterminator quote for you, just let me know.

  51. Whitney says:

    Hi there ! I live in Texas (rural) and know these exist near and in our house . I recently thought I saw on in my water bottle AFTER I had taken a drink . I am concerned about this and possible disease. Any advice ! Insight ? Thank you!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Whitney! I suggest you visit your doctor, it would be hard to confirm anything myself.

  52. Cesar R Erique says:

    Hello i have a big concern about this bugs i live in a woody area & outside my window there are like 100 of them any idea on what i should do its pretty frightning

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Cesar! Get a fine netting for your windows and calk any holes around your home. And keep an eye on any potential infestations inside the home and you should be fine.

  53. amanda says:

    what happens if you kill a kissing bug

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Amanda! I am not too sure if I understand correctly but if you dispose if it properly, there is no risk.

  54. Mary Jane Penley says:

    Are kissing bugs the same as boxelders?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Mary! No, they are not. Check out my article on box elder bugs for more info :)

  55. Monica says:

    Hey Natasha. Have you heard of any cases in Ohio? Also do kissing bugs make loud buzzing noises? I heard a buzzing noise this morning right when I woke up, but we get “stink bugs” really bad in my area and since its suprisingly warm here I didn’t know if it could have been just the stink bug buzzing. I couldn’t find a bug anywhere though

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Monica! Hard to tell, you will need to take a look at the bug and see if it matches the ones on this page. :)

  56. samantha says:

    Recently trapped an insect in a glass on our back porch that looks similar to the kissing bug. We have looked at pictured but we still add not sure if ot is somethng to be worried about. This is the second we have found. The first we found in our living room. Hopeing you may be able to help us identify it. I have pictures.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Sam, send me an email using the contact form, will take a look.

  57. Emily says:

    i believe iv been bitten by the kissing bug. i wanted to know if they leave a acid burn type wound around the bite? ive had iot for a little over a week, andf it still itches, and iv been sick and nauseous ever since. i live in north east Georgia, is it possible its a kissing bug? what should i do?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Emily, I suggest you go and see a doctor as soon as possible, don’t mess around with things like this.

  58. Mei says:

    Hi. I’m from Memphis Tennessee and the other day I pulled my shirt out of my closet and put it on to find a kissing bug in my front pocket! I’ve only found that one in my apartment but I saw a huge kissing bug outside my door one day too. Do they prefer to travel in a group or could I only have had the one come inside and be safe from more? To be honest I’m terrified I didn’t know what it was and so I did touch it it didn’t fly during my short observation of it but it was almost like it was tracking me. What could I spray to kill them in case I have more hidden?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Mei, honestly, if you have a number around your home, get an exterminator. I will forward you some details.

  59. Robert says:

    Hi I live in NJ and I came home pretty late and put the TV on and like an hour later I see a bug walking on the TV screen so I went to the bathroom got some toilet paper and when I got close to it I realized I had seen this bug on Facebook with a warning, so I picked it up and put it in a Quart container and started looking it up and found your page. How can I send you a picture of it? And who do I call to look at it? I am in South Jersey. Thank you

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Just send me an email and I will reply, then attach your photos :)

  60. Christine says:

    I would appreciate your opinion: If an article of clothing, ski/winter gloves, had soaked in water (being cleaned) in a container of water outside… and when one went to rinse the gloves they found a number of dead bugs in the water (the bugs look like kissing bugs, might have been stink bugs, uncertain what they were similar appearance to both), do you think handwashing the gloves and rinsing them in water would be safe to protect in case it has been kissing bugs dead in the water, bugs touching/on the gloves, to kill the parasite if it were present in those bugs – and thus might be in the gloves? Goog gloves, however, wondering since there were several bugs looking like that in the water. Would, in your opinion, the gloves being washed, rinsed (all by hand) and then dried on clothes line be enough to kill the Trypanosoma cruzi parasite if it were on the gloves from the bugs? Thank you for your opinion.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Christine, I am sure that will be suffient, no need to worry! Sorry I took so long to respond.

      • Jac says:

        Hello there i am in indiana and i found this bug tonight i squashed it and it had a horrible smell..anyway i can send you pics i took??

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Jac! Sure thing, just drop me an email using the contact page, I will reply and then you can attach your images. Alternatively, send me a link to them online (if you have uploaded them).

  61. lwood says:

    Can you get Chargas diesese if you use antibiotics right away.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Iwood, I suggest you ask your doctor about that, I am not certified to provide that sort of guidance.

  62. Heather Petersen says:

    I’ve caught two bugs in my house this month that look like this, stuck in water in freezer. I took a picture before it froze. Could You email me so I can send picture to you? I’m afraid it is.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Heather, drop me a message using the contact us page and I will respond with an email you can send it to.

  63. Darcee says:

    I think my son may have been bitten by one of these he had a rash around his mouth that popped up a few days ago. I am not seeing the bugs flying around everywhere around my.housw we just moved into. help!!!

    where can I send a picture

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Darcee, you can use the contact form (on this blog) but I suggest you just take him straight to the doctor.

  64. Landon says:

    I picked up one of these bugs after killing it, not knowing about how the parasite can be transmitted. Way sketched out, may have touched my face or wiped my eyes.
    Any info would be appreciated.
    thanks, T

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Landon, just go to your local physician and ask for their guidance :)

  65. Andy McCurdy says:

    Thank you for a very informative article. We live in Philadelphia in a very wooded area, and have found several bugs like you’re describing. I’m pretty sure they’re Kissing Bugs, although I’m not completely sure. I do have pictures if I could send them to you. I only see the same size bug which makes me wonder why I don’t ever see younger ones.
    Since they are drawn to light and warmth, I’m thinking of trying a flea trap to trap them. What do you think?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Andy! Might work, rather send me the pics, just email me via the contact form and I will reply.

  66. Jolene says:

    I live in south west PA and just found one in my house. I put it in alcohol and froze it. I don’t want them in my house, I have kids and pets. What should I do?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jolene, I suggest taking it to your closest governmental health department for identification and if it is a kissing bug, take it from there.

  67. edie says:

    So my daughter was bit a week ago, dr. Said never seen anything like it, didn’t know what it was. This am I think I found a kissing bug. Daughter has had weird symptoms and her bite is still bad. Not sure what to do.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Edie, I suggest taking her to the doctor, better safe than sorry.

  68. Eileen says:

    I have red and black bugs that are invading my wooden fence and sometimes my driveway. I am confused as to whether they are the kissing bug or just the box elder bug. The smaller ones are mostly red while the larger ones are mostly black. Their red eyes protrude off to the side. They have six legs. Is there a cause to be concerned?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Eileen, unless they look exactly like the pictures in this article, they are probably elder bugs or from the same insect family.

  69. Valerie says:

    Hi. Thank you for all this great info. I recently found 3 bugs that may be kissing bugs here in Tucson but I’m not sure because I noticed a kinda sweet and smelly odor coming from them after I caught them. Do kissing bugs let off any defensive odors? Thank you!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Valerie, no they don’t, might have been a stink bug?

  70. Robin says:

    I saw a bug in my light fixture tonight. I’m a bug-phobe… So I watched it for a long time running laps around my light. I got up to let my dog out to pee (she sleeps with me) we came back to bed, and I felt something crawling on my neck. Freaked. KNEW it was that creepy bug. Thought I had it off me. Went searching for it felt something odd and felt it on me again, knocked out off and killed it. Bright red blood came out of it. I’m assuming it was mine.
    Day before yesterday, I had a weird rash on my leg. Yes, I sleep with it outside my covers. I have photos of this bug. I’m so freaked out.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Robin, does the bug look like the pictures on this page? If so, might be worth going to see a medical practitioner.

  71. Yesenia says:

    Hi thank you for the information it was very helpful for me. I actually got bitten by bed bugs over a year. Near my mouth and made mouth swelled up. After been bitten my life haven’t been the same. I get headache, stomach problems, chest pains, shortness of breath, headache and the list goes on…….You think that eventhough it’s been to long ago i still can get check and get treated.

    Thank you for your help!!!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Yesenia! Its a pleasure, please consider sharing this blog with your friends so they can also benefit :)

  72. Becky says:

    Ever heard tell of them in Nova Scotia Canada ? I think I just killed one and have heard of them before… Should I be concerned ?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Becky, they are not native to that area but anything is possible I suppose.

  73. Shelley T says:

    Hi,
    I’m not sure if the bug we found flying in our house is from this species but it sure looked freaky.
    We live in southern Alberta, Canada so we lots of box elders(maple bugs) but now I’m wondering if we have these too…or something similar…ahhhh. Can I send you a picture?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Shelley, sure just message me using the contact form.

  74. Christopher says:

    I think I’ve seen some babys ones on my porch. If u can help me out I’ll try & get some pictures today. One thing I do know is it seems as soon as my body gets close to the railing on the porch these little bugs come running out kind of wierd I’ve thought. They resemble a bed bug but are a little different in ways.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Chris, sure just message me via the contact form.

  75. Sierra says:

    Hi Natasha,
    Thank you for all the info. We have an infestation of german cockroaches and have been waking up some nights with bites. I have chronically swollen lymph glands and am wondering if possible the german cockroaches can be vectors of chagas disease or if perhaps we also have kissing bugs? Please let me know your thoughts. Many thanks.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Sierra, not that I know of, sounds fairly serious though. I will drop you an email shortly.

  76. Laura says:

    Hi I have a pic of a bug I found in my daughters room could you tell me if its a kissing bug!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi, sure just send me a message via the contact us form and I will give you some instructions.

  77. Nano says:

    I found one close to my bed in Detroit, Michigan at 3/13/2016. I can send you a photos.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Nano, that is not good. I believe you so there is no need for photos, good to know :O

  78. Jennifer says:

    My puppy was just bitten by what I think is a kissing bug.
    How do I send you a photo to confirm it?
    How dangerous is it for an 8 month old puppy?
    He suddenly started drooling from the mouth where I’m guessing he was bitten. I have a photo of the bug minus his back leg that I assume the puppy pulled off.
    Please respond quickly!!!
    Jennifer

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jen, you can email me using the contact form and I will reply. I suggest that you just take him to the vet regardless, obviously something is wrong.

  79. Kylie says:

    Thinking I might have an issue with this bug in my apartment. My roommate has had small bites/bumps on her body this whole past week. They’re fairly tiny and almost resemble small pimples. She says they don’t really itch or bother her. She took a picture of the bug but it’s super small, has no red or orange, and not even close to 1″ in length. They are outside our front door too – that’s where we’ve seen most of them. I’m thinking they’re living outside and got inside from us opening the door? I’ve contacted our maintenance at our apartment complex to send an exterminator to see what the deal is. Can I send you a picture to see if this bug is really a kissing bug or something else? Very paranoid.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kylie, sure, just use the contact form :)

  80. Patrick says:

    Hello. Not sure if it’s the big we have but it sure looks like it. We live in Green Bay, WI. I was curious if the inside of these bugs are blue. If it is stepped on say, does it leave a blue trace?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Patrick, not as far as I can remember, sorry, it has been awhile since I squashed one hehe.

  81. Robert Rodriguez says:

    Hello my name is Robert and I forgot a bug and was wondering if you can send me an email so I can send you photos. Not sure if it’s a kissing bug or something else. Thank you

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Robert, use the contact form and when I reply, attach your images afterwards.

  82. Donna Bartha says:

    Is the so called “kissing bug” anythng like a so called Halloween bug”? as here in southeast PA we have something that looks somewhat like the kissing bug but it is called the Halloween Bug. and similarities?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Donna, I havn’t seen that bug but it is unlikely that it can potentially carry the same disease so don’t stress about it, unless you have an infestation of course.

  83. Tasani Janus says:

    I just found one of these on my bed yesterday. I didn’t touch it but I relocated it outside. Probably not the greatest idea in hindsight…

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hehe probably not :P

  84. Kate says:

    Hi! I’m ap freaked out by these bugs and I snapped a pic of one and I’m not sure if it’s a kidding but or not. It was broad daylight and it flew away. Can I send you the pic and u tell me what u think?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kate, sure, send me a message via the contact form and then when I reply, you can attach your pics.

  85. Chris says:

    Should I move? I found 2 of these bugs so far, I don’t want to take chances on my family, our home is always clean, but it is an older house , holes cracks and hot, basement cold. A little worried now.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Chris, moving shouldn’t be necessary. Just call an exterminator if you want to be safe, they will sort you out.

  86. Wilma says:

    I live in indiana. Yesterday I found an adult kissing bug in my pillow case. I killed it with a kleenex on my bed cover. Blood squirted out big time. So I washed my cover in hot water and bleach. But I’ve got 2 spots on my arm and I sleep with this arm under my pillow. Now I petrified to sleep. Should I be worried?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Wilma, just go see your doctor to be sure and keep an eye out for more of those insects.

  87. K says:

    Do these bugs have a similar scent to a stink bug? I was bitten on the eye last year by what I thought was a stink bug. It just flew right into my face and my instinct grabbed and threw if. I never found the bug but my fingers smelled like a stink bug. My eye bruised and was swollen for a few days following. I am wondering now if I was bit by a kissing bug?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi K, not too sure about the scent but I do suggest you go and see your local doctor to make sure that you are healthy.

  88. Julie Chung says:

    Hi,
    My brother recently found one of these bugs in the bathroom and is pretty convinced that it’s a kissing bug. He flushed it down the toilet so I didn’t get a chance to look at it, but he described it to me and it seems to match the image pretty well.
    I was wondering if you know any effective insect sprays that I could use to spray down the house?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Julie, if it is a kissing bug, I recommend you getting an exterminator to come out and assist you. Better safe than sorry.

  89. Marlene says:

    I took a picture of one in my sink this morning. Do you know if they affect dogs? I have a dog with a swollen area under her left arm. She previously had a wound in that area. I would like to send a picture to you.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Marlene, you can use the contact form but honestly, I highly recommend that you take the dog to the vet and explain the story.

  90. William says:

    I was cutting grass and there was a bunch of bugs started flying around when I hit the limbs they where brown and when I started looking they whet mating like crazy on the leaves do kissing bugs do that?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi William, lots and lots of bugs look like and do that, bit hard to give you a conclusive answer, sorry.

  91. Lorelle Earl says:

    Found what looked like a kissing bug in my house tonight – Is there someone I can send a picture to that could help me verify?!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Lorelle, sure, just use the contact form and I will reply to your email.

  92. Ruthie Lee says:

    I had this bug on me when I was planting my tomatoes and Bell peppers. It is just plain grey. Walked on my arms and back. Tickled, so I picked it off and blew it away. It didn’t bite, non agressive. I live in Tennessee, Paris. Friend told me it is a squash bug. Didn’t think there were the kissing bugs here. Can’t get the picture to you in this article, no way to attach. I posted a picture of it to Facebook. Could you look at it please, it’s in my name.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Ruthie, please send me the link using the contact form, will definitely take a look for you. I can’t just search Facebook for your name, I am pretty sure that there will be lots of results hehe.

  93. kristen says:

    I have kissing bugs in my house. They have been biting me and my sin for several month now. I caught two big ones and two little ones. An exterminator confirmed irs a kissing bug. They have sprayed inside my house twice and outside my house twice. We are still getting bit. What do I do? I live in PA. We are now sleeping with lights on. I’ve sprayed our beds with alcohol. We never see them. It was just luck on the ones we did find. We are not sitting on our sofa anymore either. I got rid of one sofa. The started getting bit sitting in the other. I have torn the house apart. I dont know what else to do.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kirsten, that is terrible, it breaks my heart to hear your story :( I suggest you get a different exterminator in, you need to get this situation resolved so you can return to living a normal life :( I will PM you some info shortly, check your email.

    • Ted says:

      That sounds horrible Kristen,
      Try hanging mosquito netting around your beds. Tuck it in and close off the entrance.

      • Natasha Anderson says:

        Hi Ted, thanks for helping Kristen, really appreciate it.

  94. Ted says:

    Great article Natasha!
    Do you know how or where to get tested for Chagas disease? I had a physical and asked a dr at loma linda who had no idea or protocol for how to get testing done. I’ve been bit many times over the years here in CA mojave desert. By the time I wake up itching with allergic reaction, I’ve already been scratching, so there is a chance of infection…
    Thank you for any advise.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Ted, the chances of infection are fairly low but yeah, it is worth getting tested in my opinion. Try going to a local pathology lab, they might be able to help you.

  95. Nicole says:

    I found a bug similar looking to this one in my kitchen. I’m not sure if it is a kissing bug or not. I would love your opinion. Where can I send a picture?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Nicole, please upload it and share the link or alternatively, send me an email via the contact form and will get back to you with instructions.

  96. Metina says:

    Hello I am from Massachusetts and my son was visiting his father who also lives in Massachusetts when he came home he had a bite next to his mouth it looked like a hive or a be sting or a masqueto bite but it stayed for 2 days and the swelling didn’t go down but he said it didn’t itch or bother him I asked him how he got it he said he didn’t know that he woke up with it.. does the bite from this bug always itch? do we have them this far up? should I ask his dr? thank you for your time

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Metina, not necessarily, really depends on the person hey. I recommend that you take him to the doctor, just to be on the safe side but otherwise, I wouldn’t worry unless you see these pests or more bites appear.

  97. Shorting says:

    Hello , how can I send a picture to identify this bug , I’ve taken a picture from a bug in my balcony but I’m not sure if this is the one

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Shorting, please upload it to imgur and send me the link, I will definitely try help you.

  98. Bugging out says:

    Well, I squashed a bug with a napkin and flushed it down the toilet. Was curious what kind of bug it was, so started looking on the internet. The bug was all black with big hind legs, large snout like mouth and had wings.. My guess is it a kissing bug, but it looks nothing like the photos I have seen on the web (no markings, thin legs). I don’t have a photo to confirm one way or another, my question would be does the kissing bug look different pending on the region? I live in the mid west, near Kansas City, MO.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Heya, if it doesn’t look like the pictures, chances are it is another type of bug from the same insect family so I wouldn’t worry, unless you have an infestation and they are annoying you. Hope that helps!

  99. Laura o says:

    I found one and took a picture of it. I was wondering if you can get back to me by email and I can send you the pic. Ugh I have Lyme disease this is the last thing I need.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Laura, I have emailed you. Remember that even if you get bitten a number of times, doesn’t mean that you will get the disease. Just saying, chat soon!

      • laura O says:

        I emailed you back the picture. I understand that, still with a weakened immune system it is pretty scary. Thank you for emailing me back. I hope you will be able to answer and tell me it isn’t the kissing bug.

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Heya! I replied to your email :)

  100. Shayla says:

    I think I have found a kissing bug in my home , if I send a picture would you be able to identify the bug ?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Shayla, sure, just upload it somewhere and send me the link!

  101. Ciara says:

    Hi, I am researching kissing bugs because I’m afraid I found one in my sons room. I swore, when my 4 year old bent down to exam it, before I fully realized what he was doing, the thing came at him. Like it charged him. I thought it was a spider at first, because of it charging him. I got it with a tissue and looked at it…not a spider. I snapped a couple of pics. Can you take a look at them? I’ve tried to look online. It doesn’t have orange or red markings. I found two…the second one about an hour later in our bathroom. It did have wings, but preferred to crawl, very fast. I’m very worried. We live in Northwest Indiana, right at the tip of Lake Michigan. Thank you!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Ciara, sounds scary lol, sorry about that. Sure, just upload the image to imgur or some online storage and send me the link in a comment, I will try take a look at it for you.

  102. Carol Benson says:

    Thank you, Natasha, for your very informative article! I live in south Texas and killed a kissing bug in my garage yesterday. I confirmed with photo and anatomical description that it is Triatoma protracta. Later I found this small insect crawling along a baseboard in my living room near the front door. I didn’t think it was an immature kissing bug, but on closer inspection saw varigated striping along the legs and lower body and got a little nervous. He does have a very thin tube-like proboscis, like a hair in diameter which is as long as his upper body, so maybe not kissing bug. May I send you a photo of this little bug (and the big one, if you wish) for your opinion?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Carol, it is a pleasure! Sure, just upload it somewhere and send me the link :)

  103. Melinda says:

    Help!! I have had several episodes of hives with INTENSE itching. Never on my face (usually extremities) and I never know when I was bit or if it was actually a bite. It has happened last summer about every 2 weeks and has started again this year. It is miserable and I am being treated by an allergist. We have found several bugs last summer and again this summer that look exactly like the kissing bugs. They have been spotted on the couch, in the garage, and in the master bedroom. We live in the Central Florida area. Taking the ones we caught to our Pest Control soon, but wanted your thoughts.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Melinda, although it is a little dark, it does look like a kissing bug. However, remember that kissing bugs are part of a family of insects and they all look fairly similar so let me know what they tell you, I am interested in finding out myself.

      • Melinda says:

        Pest control confirmed they are kissing bugs. I continue to get bit, and I am miserable! This time we have found them immediately after I was bit. Once on our couch around 4pm and a couple times in the master bedroom overnight and found it on a chair next to our bed the mext morning. Massey does not have a handle on this (obviously), so what can we do??? My husband is caulking every crack and crevice he can. We have new windows and those are sealed good. So…what is a good treatment? He says baking soda or talcum powder, but then I read about the spray you mentioned. Ahhhh

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Melinda, yeah just caulk those cracks, etc, that will keep them out. Honestly, you can just kill the ones you see and then keep everything else out, I am sure that they will go away after while.

  104. Matthew Pule says:

    I think I found a kissing bug in my house. All the descriptions fit but it also made a buzzing sound. Do kissing bugs buzz

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Matt, they do make a sound while flying but I am not sure I would call it a “buzz” hehe, it is usually fairly quiet.

  105. Rachel says:

    I have a picture of what might be kissing bugs on my tomatoes. Can you tell me if they are kissing bugs?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Rachel, sure, upload the photo somewhere and send me the link :)

  106. Kimber says:

    So last week I woke up with 4, 1/8 inch in diameter red what looked like bites next to my mouth on my cheek. The edges of them were touching each other with the last one under the one before it forming an L shape. It was very itchy and when I scratched it, it oozed a clear yellow liquid and the top sloughed off. I tried treating it with Neosporin and it did not help. The next day some dry skin peeled off of it in big chuncks. It spread each morning it was bigger and finally the whole area was about the size of a quarter. It developed more bumps, but they were not red. The redness disappeared by the next day after being bit. The whole area was a little swollen, but not like the photos you see of peoples eyes swollen shut. Because it was not getting better I went to my doctor and she did a quick look and just gave me an antibiotic. She thinks I got into something like poison ivy, but the thing is I was not anywhere where I could have gotten into something like that.

    Now it is healing with one area that is a sore that has not healed all the way, the swelling is gone though. Tonight I was sitting in my bed and looked down and saw a black bug that was about .5 inch long and only about 1/8 inch wide and its two front legs had a reddish tint to them and it had a long head. Does this sound like it is a kissing bug? Should I return to my doctor to tell her about the bug? I have searched my room and have not found any other evidence of bugs. Nervous!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kimber, it kinda sounds like one but I will need a photo to give confirmation. Maybe just compare the insect to the photos on this page, does it look exactly the same?

      • Kimber says:

        It looked similar to the last picture in the red box above, but its two front legs had a reddish tone, it did not appear to have the outer striped rim around the abdomen and you could clearly see the wings. I did not notice any yellow color on it as you see in other photos of them.

        Thanks for your help!

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Kimber, yeah sounds like one. Keep an eye out for more and take action if necessary.

  107. Andrea says:

    Hello, I currently reside in the NW Arkansas area and I am telling you they are here. My husband is a light sleeper, thank God, because he was woken up with one on his eyelid. Luckily, he caught it before it bit him and he didn’t recognize it because he is from Illinois. He had killed it but saved the bug for me to see and I remembered seeing warnings previously about these bugs. It was a spot on, adult female, that had been crawling on his face. When Monday comes around we are going to inform our apartment manager that we need more pesticide help.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Andrea, goodness, that must have been fairly traumatic! I will send a link for a free quote for your apartment manager, I am sure he will appreciate it. Let me know how it goes please!

  108. Tim Doran says:

    I think I caught one of those. Not sure. I found it on my window in KY. Can I send you a pic?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Tim, sure, just upload it somewhere and send me the link.

  109. angel rose cubian says:

    Im a victim of that kissing bug. I was bitten twice .last month and now . i dont know what to do when itching strikes. And im afraid because base on what i have read its dangerous., and i have a baby she a breastfeed . is she may affected to the virus that i have.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Angel, the chances of the insect carrying the disease is very small, but maybe check with your doctor and they can confirm for you.

  110. Mike LePage says:

    Wife just squashed this bug and would like to know if that’s what it is. Long beak nose unless when it was squashed it pushed its face out this way. In Michigan and need to know how to send a photo. Thanks. 99% sure that it is the kissing bug and most likely brought home from the local grocery store.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Mike, please upload it somewhere online and send it to me using the “contact us” page.

      • Mike LePage says:

        Where is the Contact us page?

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Mike, look at the links at the top of this blog, you should see it there.

  111. Beth says:

    I think I have had 2 kissing bugs in my home. 2 months ago we found a live bug in my daughters room on her ceiling light and today i found a dead bug in my hall closet that is at least quite similar to the bug we killed in May. I have lived in this house for a couple of years and have also had what I think are stink bugs inside my home. They are grey ish in color and look like armour.
    Totally creeping me out!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Beth, maybe they are stink bugs? If you send me a pic (upload and send me a link) maybe I can help you.

  112. Meghan says:

    HELP!!!! I may have a kissing bug in my room. I have a photo and also I have had three tiny bites on my body. The bites are small, round, scabs. The bug was located by my bed.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hey Meghan! Upload the pic somewhere and then send me a link to it. Thanks!

  113. Camryn says:

    I was outside one day last week when a bug that fits the description perfectly landed on me, I freaked out and tried to fling it off when like what you said it attacked and bit my face, it was still alive when I brought in in the house and killed it but it was still intact and recognizable I took a picture of it and even put in in a bag, but my aunt threw it away I’ve been worried ever since and since I’m a minor I can’t go to the doctor with out my parents who refuse to bring me, I just have a qustion do they bites always swell up or can they stay small? Because I’m pretty sure it bite me on the face because it felt like something punctured it but I can’t tell because it’s not swelling up and they won’t bring me to the doctor to at least see if I’m infected

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Camryn, it can stay small, really depends on your skin sensitivity. Honestly, I wouldn’t stress too much, even if it was a kissing bug. Although it is possible to carry the bad stuff, it is still a very small percentage. Just keep an eye on the situation and mention it to the doctor if symptoms come up in the nearish future.

  114. John Maxwell says:

    I live in southern Arizona. I was recently bit in the forearm multiple times is there any type of spray or repellent for kissing bugs?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi John, not specially for kissing bugs but most general insect sprays will work. Your best bet is to try keep them out your home though, so try find out how they are getting in.

  115. Laura says:

    Hi my name is laura and I live in rancho cucamonga in California. I was in the pool today with my kids and a bug landed near my baby where he was floating around…I got it on the net and tried to drown it but it didn’t work. So I put it on top of the pool and smashed it. There was no blood just like something yellow. I remember seeing another one just like it not that long ago so I took a picture of it and I compared it to the pictures online of the kissing bugs. And I’m pretty sure that’s what it is. How can I send you an email with the picture so I can be sure it is one? And what’s the best way to get rid of them? I haven’t seen any inside my home just out in the yard. Thank you so much.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Laura! Please upload the image somewhere and then use the contact form to send me the link, I will definitely help you out.

  116. Brandi says:

    I was just speaking to my son about another article I read on this kissing bug. We arrived home and saw a similar bug buy not sure if it’s an actual kissing bug. I took a picture of it and everyone who sees it says it is this bug. My son took a shoe and smashed it but we couldn’t locate the body or anything. Do these bugs jump or fly once tried to be killed?? The bug is all black with a white line, collar like around the neck with the same legs, nose, and all. So I’m wondering if it is and what I should do. Thanks

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Brandi! If it was just the one, i wouldn’t stress about it much. However, if you start to see them appearing more often (or experience bites), let me know and we can take action :)

  117. Jackie says:

    I’m not sure if I found a kissing bug or something that looks similar. I have a photo on my phone and email, how can I upload here?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jackie, please upload it somewhere and send me the link via a comment or via email, will be happy to try assist you.

      • Jackie says:

        There isn’t a space to upload here, and I can’t find an email address. Where can I send it to? Thanks!

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Jackie, please upload the image somewhere online (imgur, etc.) and send me the link, my contact form doesn’t allow uploads at the moment sorry.

  118. Jennie says:

    Hi, I live in a very small town in Missouri. I just found one of these crawling on my daughters play house…I’m for certain it is a kissing bug after lots of researching their appearance. What is the likelihood that it is infected with the bacteria that causes the Chagas’ disease? Should I be concerned since it was only one that I’ve seen (killed it with a tissue)? Thanks for any help!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jennie, there is a very slight chance to be honest. However, if you want to be safe, just get tested :)

  119. chrissy says:

    Have the kissing bugs been found in Indiana at all? I live in Indianapolis an would like to know please an thanks you for your help.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Chrissy! I havn’t but don’t rule it out, just compare what you find with a picture of one.

  120. Steve says:

    Hi, I have had a bug biting me for a while now. It leaves marks on my chin, below lip, beside nose, under eye, and even on neck. I have a king size bed and bed bug protectors on box spring and mattress. Under the king size mattress, in the middle, several hundred black dots appeared on the new white bed bug protector. I am now seeing more blood under the bed as well. I believe this to be a serious concern because one of the marks was tested positive for gram negative bacteria on my face. I do not know what to do because I have been renting a room and pest control said I would need the landlord to be present who lives in Europe. Does the Assassin or kissing bug do this? How fast can they move?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Steve! Yes it is possible but don’t rule out other insects. Maybe reach out to another pest control company, just explain that you are looking for solid evidence of the bug and they should be able to help you.

  121. Sam says:

    Hi, I’m doing a project about these kissing bugs. I was wondering if you knew any natural predator of them? I can’t find it anywhere else. Thank you!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Sam, not to my knowledge, sorry. Let me know if you find anything though, will share it with the community!

  122. Jessica says:

    We definitely have them here in Albuquerque NM. Have killed about 4-5 in past week.
    :(

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jess, oh dear! Let me know if you need help getting rid of them.

  123. jaesson says:

    this insect bites me all the time, i noticed that if they bite they will stay near to the part were they hide, so i easily catch them…

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jaesson! Thanks for sharing that :)

  124. Jason says:

    Currently have these swarming the front of my house during the warm sunny day, up here near Ottawa Ontario!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jason! Goodness, RUN AWAY hehe :P

  125. Jen says:

    It seems hard to tell the difference between the kissing bug, and the box elder. Perhaps a photo comparison would help out with identification. Otherwise a great and informative article.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jen, thanks for the suggestion. I have an article on box elder bugs so you can use both articles for a comparison if that helps :)

  126. In NJ says:

    I have one in plastic container that I caught
    And I took pictures. I have seen the red ones,is there a way to properly identify these.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi NJ! Usually you can get them identified by a government office, usually the department of agriculture. Hope that helps!

  127. Kristina says:

    I have heard of getting rid of stink bugs you can use vinegar, water, and dawn dish soap in a bottle and spray them. I guess it will kill them. Can you do the same method for kissing bugs?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kristina! Yep, that combination kills so many insects and kissing bugs are one of them. Good luck and thanks for sharing!

  128. Justin says:

    Hello. I live in Ontario and I have a bunch of these bugs on the side of my House and in my garden that look like the kissing bug. Brown and black with orange outline. R they in Ontario??

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Justin, yes it is possible. Take it to the nearest office for inspection if you want to be sure :)

  129. Dulce says:

    Hi Natasha Anderson, I think I killed 2 kissing bugs one inside home on the window then the second one outside the door. I live upstate ny and I’m a lil surprise the I have found some here cause I’ve been reading that there’s this bugs on Texas or more near the center of USA. I’m hoping you could help me it’s possible to have these bugs all the way up state ny?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Dulce! Yes it is possible, does it look like the pictures on this page?

  130. Justin says:

    I live in montgomery county, Pennsylvania. Kissing bugs are popping up all over her. I’ve seen them outside. And now i found one in my bathroom sink. I also found “parts” of one under my bed. Maybe from molting? I havnt had any bites yet.
    I just wanted to mention to all the people trying to identify these things. If you flip them over you can see their long stinger. It folds up under their body.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Justin, thanks for offering some help to the community. Hope you get rid of them soon!

  131. Dawn says:

    Hello, Natasha..I found a bug very similiar to the pictures on a small humidifier type machine that is on a table next to my bed. It is very lethargic and slow. I feel kinda creeped out! I do have stink bugs here(just bought the house a couple months ago)and hopefully they will start to die out as the colder weather begins. We have had a unusually hot summer and even as of today, it warmer than many years. I am hoping this is not the kissing bug! This is a old house, with a ton of gaps. I live in a rural area of Buffalo, NY. We have taken several pictures but unsure of the email address to send them. Thanks for your help!

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Dawn, upload them somewhere online and send me the links, I will take a look for you.

  132. David says:

    Hi Natasha I was bit on the lip by a kissing bug back in 2005 in Army boot camp do i have anything to worry about now, after reading the aarticle it can take years to see effects? Also i have hundreds of box elder bugs clinging to my house and a few creep inside, are they any threat to my family and myself?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi David, honestly, you could be fine. The insect isn’t guaranteed to carry it and even if it does, it has to defecate in the bite for it to transmit. No they are more a nuisance than anything, I have an article on this blog about sorting them out, check it :)

  133. Dana Smith says:

    I have recently moved from one bad house that was coved in black mold and lead poisoning and into a trailer that we are renting, that has ants and these kissing bugs.. when I sleept inside this new place for the first time and woke up I was coved from bug bites on my hands wrist and toes I was itching so bad! Now I have a big scar on my big toe from it . I thought it was a misquote inside the house or something… but it was just me that was getting attacked my fiancé who sleeps right next to me has no bites on him what so ever! He was calling me crazy and was just telling me it’s my nerves Bc I have bad nerves but I knew it was something biting me! Bc I killed one of these kissing bugs and I wasn’t sure what it was. But now my one year old son is starting to get bit on his hands.. I’m just so confused and don’t know what to do.. could anybody give me some advise please..

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Dana, the bite marks don’t lie, you are obviously being bitten by something? Insects go after different people sometimes, don’t mean that they are not there hehe. Might be worth using a general insect bomb, that should sort out the issue.

  134. alexis swarner says:

    Can I kill it, it’s already almost dead outside of this hospital I’m cleaning. I did some research on them of what they look like I know it’s one and I don’t have anything to put it into to take to a government health department. So just want to know if I can kill it and if so how

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Alexis! Just throw it in some soapy water. Hope that helps!

  135. Jos Gen says:

    My question is what are the names of the antibiotics that are used to counter the effects of a kissing bug infection. I am curious about what side effects they may cause.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Jos! Sorry I don’t know those details, best ask a medical professional :) Thanks for stopping by though, wish I could help you more.

  136. Karen Marston says:

    I do believe I have kissing bugs in my back yard. I live in Kentucky. I wish there was a way for me to a picture on here because I would really like to know. They do not have any red or orange on them but look almost exactly like the pictures. Do you think they could be?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Karen, it might just be boxelder bugs. Check out my article on them and tell me if they look similar.

  137. Amanda says:

    Hi I found this two of these on my shed door. Where my dogs are at. I took pics I wonder how to upload them.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Amanda, you can upload them online and send me a link to them via the comment section. Otherwise take it to the nearest government health department for easy identification.

  138. Terry says:

    Hi Natasha, thanks for the article. I live in Washington State, so was surprised to find, what I am pretty sure is a kissing bug. I captured it and took pics. It appeared to be dying. Considering the word out there is that these bugs are infesting the lower states, I was surprised and dismayed to find him. Would you mind looking at the pictures or advise as to where to send them?

    Thank you

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Terry, I suggest you send them to the nearest government health department, they will definitely help you. Its a pleasure, thanks for stopping by!

  139. Bmoose says:

    I live in western NC and about a week ago had a bug on my neck at work around 5 pm. It wasn’t on my neck long and snack it off try to squash it but it flew off and I’m not itching around where it was, just curious if it could’ve been one considering it was daylight and curious if you think I need to see a dr.?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Bmoose, I cannot say unfortunately. If you are concerned, maybe just go see the doc. :)

  140. Amy says:

    I am in Cornwall Ontario Canada and I think I might have had a couple kissing bugs in my house. Can send a picture to varify.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Amy, sure, just upload it somewhere and send me the link to the image via the comment section.

  141. Brandon says:

    I live in western NC and was at work Wednesday last week and had a large bug on my neck that might’ve been the for 30 seconds to a minute before I felt it and knocked it off and tried to smash it but it flew away to quick. don’t know if it was this bug or not was all brown and had longer legs and haven’t been itching or had any rash but don’t know if I’m being paranoid or not because it was 5pm and daylight and out in the middle of a road and I don’t know if it bit me or not … Would you recommend anything?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Brandon, in all honesty, I can’t really guess what the insect was. If you want to be on the safe side, just go visit the doc. :)

      • Brandon says:

        How likely is it that it wouldve been carrying the disease? Dont want to be to paranoid and go to dr. if it’s not very likely. It was under a inch l ok ng and didn’t have any marking really.

        • Natasha Anderson says:

          Hi Brandon, unless you are living in South America, it is not likely. However, it is not impossible so if the doc makes you feel calm, then rather go :)

  142. Kim says:

    Hi, I was driving my car tonight and felt something on my finger. I looked and saw this big black bug. I don’t think it bit me. I flung it off my hand then pulled over & smashed it & threw it out of my car. I came home & washed my hand like a million times. I live in northeast Ohio, right by Lake Erie. Are there any reports of these kissing bugs in this area? Also the bug appeared to be all black, no stripes or other colors. I’m a little worried but again I don’t think it bit me. Would I even know if it did. Thanks so much

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Kim, it’s possible but I wouldn’t stress about it. If you want to be sure, maybe just visit the doc :)

  143. Tabitha Doughty says:

    Hi I live in Tucson Arizona and I live out in the desert outside of town I’m in a really old house that does have really old windows with lots of opportunities for bugs to come in I have caught several confirmed kissing bugs in my bed and now when I get bit I know that its from a kissing bug… I have pulled my bed away from the windows and mopped with bleach water my concern is I’ve had about a total of 10 bites total at least usually 3 or 4 at a time should I be concerned and get them checked out if/when I get bit?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Tabitha, since it sounds like it’s stressing you, I am going to recommend it. Better safe than sorry. I also recommend that you calk and seal up the house, to stop those sorts of insects invading in the future. Good luck, please share this post on Facebook if you appreciated my help.

  144. Dave Cummins says:

    Hello,
    I woke from a nap at 7:15 pm and a bug was on my shoulder. I picked it up, not knowing it was a bug but then when I looked at it, it is either a stink bug or a kissing bug / assassin bug. A stink bug would not seek me out and be on my shoulder while I’m asleep in bed, right? Is it possible for me to send you a picture of this bug for identification?
    Dave

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Dave, probably not. But then again, it might have just in the wrong place at the wrong time hehe. Upload the pic somewhere and send me the link as a response to this comment, I will take a look.

  145. Lisa Anderson says:

    Hi, I had a bug crawling on me last night and I flicked it off and took a picture. Then proceeded to smash it. (I hate bugs) I have compared it to the internet and it was most certain one of these little creatures. What is the likeliness I will see more. Did I mention I don’t like bugs! Is there anything I can put around my house to ward them off? Do the babies look like a little like baby roaches?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Lisa, it is possible but I wouldn’t loose sleep over it. You can calk any exterior to interior holes (if there are any in your house) and use netting on your windows, etc. That will keep insects out, just don’t make the house look ugly hehe. Good luck, please share this post on Facebook if you appreciated my help.

  146. Melissa smith says:

    Hello! I live in Ny and I am almost 100% sure I saw a kissing/kissing bugs in my home. I flushed it but it was so weird looking that it nagged at me so finally I decided to search the description and kissing bug came up. Before ever seeing the bug this summer my daughter had a bite in her face and you could clearly see where the proboscis went in, it looked very painful but she said it wasn’t. We have also had slightly swelling of the eye, joint pain, and lethargy on and off. My husband says that am just taking random things and putting them together and doesn’t believe me. Even though he saw the bug before I flushed and agreed that it looked very much like a kissing bug. He is saying that because an article mentioned that they are found in southern states he doesn’t believe that we can have them here. So I guess what I’m askin is is it possible? Or am really just crazy? Also I want to ask my pediatrition to text for it but I am not sure of the test name, and honesty I’m a bit worried he may think I’m just off my rocker and worried for no reason as well.

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Melissa! It is possible to be a kissing bug, but the disease isn’t commonly found in the insects in the area in which you live. You can get tested if you like, it is a simply blood examination. Ask for a “Chagas test”. However, it is worth noting that there are literally hundreds of other reasons that could be causing those symptoms, but I guess it’s worth ruling this one out by testing. Hope that helps!

  147. Nicole Ashford says:

    I’m not sure if I just killed one I’m freaking out

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Nicole! Take it to your local health department for identification.

  148. Charles says:

    Im not certainly sure if its a kissing bug but i just swatted something on my face and it directly went into my shorts and bit me two times in the leg. Is the bite of a kissing bug hurts so bad? Does the two quick bites can cause the disease? Where can I send the picture of this insect for confirmation?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Charles! They can hurt but no, it doesn’t mean that you automatically get the disease. You can send it to your local governmental health department for identification. Have a good one!

  149. Dan Schmucker says:

    While visiting Honduras and going on a walk a bug flew in my eye..I instantly removed it from the corner of my eye but sprayed a smelly stuff which stunk like a stink bug into my eye! I washed it the best I could but the stuff got in my eye ..it stings ..like red pepper …should I be worried?

    • Natasha Anderson says:

      Hi Dan! If it is still causing distress, I recommend going to the doctor, not worth risking it. Hope that helps!

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