Concerned about carpet beetles in your home? Mantis pest solutions, your local Overland Park pest control company, will answer frequently asked questions about these invaders.
If you’ve discovered tiny black bugs crawling around your home, and they don’t bite, and their shells are hard and shiny, they are probably carpet beetles. These unwelcome guests have round bodies measuring just 1/16 to 1/8 inches long.
While most appear black, some are mottled, with spots of brown, reddish-orange, yellow, and black on a lighter background. They are also covered in tiny hairs, but you can’t see that with the naked eye. Their larvae resemble small, furry caterpillars.
Adult carpet beetles don’t bite humans. They feed on pollen or nectar but can sometimes invade your favorite foods—cereal, flour, and rice. Generally, adult carpet beetles don’t cause damage to your home. But that doesn’t mean they are innocent bugs. If you discover an infestation, you are right to be worried.
Their larva is the most destructive, and they don’t eat what the adults feed on. They have an enormous appetite and feast on keratinous foods, which is an animal protein found in many household goods.
These pests will gnaw on rugs, curtains, upholstery, clothing, and books. Anything made of feathers, hair, wool, silk, and leather will be food for the bugs. They’ll also munch on dirty synthetic material if it’s coated with food, oil, and sweat from humans or pets.
Apart from destroying items, the carpet beetle larvae can also cause allergies. Some people are allergic to the hairs on the larvae. You may feel itchy or have rashes.
It’s not okay to coexist with a few carpet beetles. If you happen to notice even a single carpet beetle, be it worm-like larvae or a flying adult, don’t ignore the problem. Left unchecked, these small insects can become pests in the home. It’s only a matter of time before they start to damage your clothes and fabrics.
While carpet beetles are shy critters and feed in dark, hidden areas, they leave behind some traces. You’ll notice dead skin since they shed their external skin numerous times in their nine-month lifecycle.
They also leave black or brown fecal pellets the size of a grain of sand. Look for dead skins and droppings on the underside of rugs, at the base of your wardrobe, and below your furniture.
You may also notice tiny black beetles slowly climbing walls or lying dead on windowsills. Another telltale sign of an infestation is that carpet beetles tend to damage a single, large area on items, whether carpet, rug, cloth, or blanket.
Adults usually enter homes through doors, windows, or fresh-cut plants and flowers. They then lay approximately 40 eggs in places where their larvae will have constant access to food. That means their nests will be on or near wool carpets and rugs and items made of fur, leather, animal horn, bone, or silk. You may also find nests near dried plant products.
The best solution to tackle a small infestation of carpet beetles is to thoroughly clean the areas where the bugs tend to live. Put infected items in the washing machine and clean everything inside your closets and dressers. Next, thoroughly vacuum the floors, upholstered furniture, carpets, and rugs.
When vacuuming, make sure you move around the furniture to get to all those tough-to-reach spots. Finally, wipe down all food storage areas, discard contaminated food, and start storing cereals in airtight containers.
For larger infestations or a recurring issue, your best option is to call Mantis pest solutions, your local Overland Park pest control company. After our home inspection confirms that it’s definitely carpet beetles gnawing on your valuables, we will use specialist chemicals and professional steaming to exterminate the bugs.
If you could not find the answer you’re looking for, feel free to reach out to one of our caring customer service representatives.