These tiny pesky insects may be difficult to see with the naked eye, but they sure leave noticeable damage to textiles around your home. Carpet beetles are small insects and are regarded as pests in warehouses, homes and other locations where suitable food exists. The adult carpet beetles feed on pollen and nectar, but it is the larvae that are responsible for the serious damage in your home!
Carpet beetles may be found in the birds’ nests on the roof. From there, they crawl along the pipes and move into the upper areas of the house. Once inside your home, carpet beetles can infest your home and cause serious damage to the household items made out of animal products.
To gain a better understanding, refer to the life cycle of these pests.
A female carpet beetle lays up to 100 eggs near the food source, usually late summer and autumn. When eggs hatch, the destructive stage begins.
The larvae, similar to a caterpillar, begin to feed in dark and undisturbed areas eg. under carpet edges or furniture.
Their diet consists of protein sources: carpets, wool, fur, silk, felt, bedding, floor coverings, furniture, clothing, leather, pet hair, dead insects, feather dusters, hair brushes and stored food such as cereals and dried meat.
The larvae stage may last up to a year depending on the food supply.
The larvae shed their skins during the transition between stages. The last larval skin is lost in the pupal stage, before they emerge as adults
Adult carpet beetles can live for up to 2 months. After laying eggs, the female generally dies within a few days.
The only damage the adult carpet beetles do is laying eggs, that hatch the larvae, which then feast on your fine items!
Damage occurs to: carpets, rugs, underfelt, furniture, wall hangings, decorative needlework, clothing, wool insulation, insect collections, stuffed animals, drapery and antiques. Sometimes felts and hammers in pianos become infested and so badly damaged that the tone and action of the instrument are seriously affected.
The presence of adult beetles, usually on the window sills, is simply an indication of an infestation in your home and that textile and other food sources to this pest should be inspected.
Regularly inspect areas at risk: under the furniture, along carpet edges, mattresses
buttonRegularly clean furniture
buttoncarpet_beatles_blackVacuum regularly, especially in areas under furniture, heaters or at the skirting junction.
buttonCheck for old bird nests and spider webs, remove if found.
buttonEliminate food sources: dead insects, hair
buttonInspect flowers brought from the garden for adult beetles
buttonKeep blankets, linen clean by washing in hot water or dry cleaning
buttoncarpet_beatles_variegatedAny animal specimens should be regularly checked, and may need to be placed in the freezer for 2 weeks
buttonStore clean items in protective plastic bag or containers
buttonSeal cracks near windows, ceilings, in walls.
buttonCall the pest control experts for advice and service
There are 4 species of carpet beetle in Australia. The 2 common species are the variegated and the black carpet beetle. The other species and brief description of each are:
buttonvariegated carpet beetle: body length 2 – 3 mm, yellow/black/white colours
buttonblack carpet beetle: 3 – 5 mm long, elliptical black body,
buttonfurniture carpet beetle: body length 2 – 3 mm, yellow/black/white colours
buttonAustralian carpet beetle: 2- 3 mm in body length, dark with light markings