Carpet beetles are actually a number of beetles spanning several different genera. Many of these species belong to the genus Antherenus, such as the variegated carpet beetle. Adult beetles are small with compact oval shaped bodies. Their legs and head are often hidden under the body.
The variegated carpet beetle and the furniture carpet beetle are roughly 2-3 millimeters long. They are mottled yellow, white and black. The black carpet beetle is larger and more elongated, about 3-5 millimeters. They are black with brown legs.
The Australian carpet beetle is dark with light markings and about 2-3 millimeters long. This is the only native species of carpet beetle.
Most species have larvae that are slow moving, brown in colour and covered in bristles. They moult as they grow, leaving cast brown skins behind. It is the larvae that are responsible for the damage. Carpet beetle larvae don’t just attack carpet! They feed on a wide variety of household items including book bindings, leather, wool, cotton, linen, rayon, fur, hair, hides, horns, feathers, silk, velvet, felt, bone, seed, grain, cereal, cake mix, rye meal and flour.
The adult beetles fly readily on warm sunny days. They feed on pollen. Adults are attracted to light and may fly into homes.
Females can lay up to 100 white eggs or more. They take 8 to 15 days to hatch. After hatching the larvae begin their destructive feeding.
As with other household pests good housekeeping is crucial. Carpets need to be thoroughly vacuumed to remove all trace of lint, dust and hair. This includes cleaning out shelves and drawers. Abandoned bird or rat nests in attics, roof voids or eaves should be removed.
Our certified pest management technicians can treat your property for carpet beetle. This involves treating all carpeted areas with an approved pesticide.