What Are Carpet Beetles And Why They Are A Threat To Your Family

Carpet beetles are a species of small beetles that infest and feed on carpets and other items made of wool, felt, silk, feather, skin and feather. If you find thin, bare areas or holes in your carpets, furniture upholstery, rugs and leather book bindings, chances are you have an infestation in your home. Here are a some facts about this pest that you need to be aware of:

What Do Carpet Beetles Look Like?
Adults have attractive brown, white and orange pattern. The most conspicuous form of this insect is its larvae, which appear as small grubs with white and brown rings lined with hairs.

Carpet beetles in their larval stage also cause the most damage.

What Do They Eat?
Adult carpet beetles primarily feed on pollen so they do not often cause direct damage. The larvae, however, eat materials that have the fibrous animal protein called keratin.

The larvae often feed within the hems, collars, and cuffs of fabrics in closets, boxes and chests where the items are often placed for long-term storage. They seldom attack cotton and synthetic fabric such as rayon and polyester unless these contain some wool, or are soiled with food stains and oils.

The larvae can eat away dried flesh and cartilage. This poses a problem with museums that house insect collections and taxidermied animals.

Carpet beetles are also considered as pantry pests because they have a taste for stored food products such as baking mixes and flour. The adults can fly into the pantry and lay their eggs in places where the larvae can easily access food such as seed and milled products.

Can Carpet Beetles Harm Humans?
The eating habits of the insect can cause serious monetary damage, but it isn’t just the destruction of properties and food items that you have to worry about when you have an infestation of carpet beetles in your home.

These insects do not not typically bite humans but they can still pose health risks to your family. The hairs of the  larvae, for instance, can break off when touched and cause itching and irritation.

They can also cause bumpy and itchy rash that looks like bed bug bites. The condition, known as carpet beetle dermatitis, happens with prolonged exposure with the hair fibers of the carpet beetle larvae. Airborne fibers from these bugs may also cause eye irritation and respiratory tract problems.

Where Do Carpet Beetles Live?
Carpet beetles are common in areas where people frequently move. You can find them in coats, scarves, blankets, rugs, upholstery, down pillows, and comforters, which they may gnaw on for food.

They may also live and breed in areas that you cannot always get to, such as the inside of the mattress.

If you are unfortunate enough to move into a home infested with this pest, you should have realized by now that carpet beetles are particularly difficult to get rid of.

These insects may cause costly damage to your belongings and even lead to health problems of your family if the infestation persists. Unfortunately, a DIY approach to treatment does not always work.

A professional and experienced pest controller is imperative to address a serious infection. We are an expert at dealing with home pests and we can provide you the services you need to detect and thoroughly control a carpet beetle infestation. Don’t wait for the infestation to get worse, contact us now and find out how we can help you.

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