Identifying the type of carpet beetles and what they eat is important if you are to get rid of them. There are different types of carpet beetles and all can cause serious damage to your property. There are four species of these insects that are the most common. These include black carpet beetles, furniture carpet beetles, varied carpet beetles, and common carpet beetles.
- Black Carpet Beetles
Black carpet beetles are one of the most widespread and abundant carpet beetles. This species causes the most damage to fabrics, carpets, and other such materials. Adults can grow to a length of 1/8-3/16 inches. They have a shiny black skin and brownish legs.
Black carpet beetles lay their eggs indoors or outdoors. Each female lays about 50 eggs within about three weeks. After that, it dies. Indoors, they lay eggs underneath baseboards, in air ducts, in lint, etc. Eggs hatch in 6-11 days in warm weather. Black carpet beetles are prolific breeders so it is highly recommended that you get rid of them as quickly as possible.
You will find larvae of black carpet beetles inside upholstered furniture, under baseboards, or at the edge of rugs and carpets. Mature larvae can move around rather widely, so they can be found anywhere in the building. You can expect to find them in a kitchen sink, bathtub, or sometimes crawling on ceilings and walls.
- Furniture Carpet Beetles
Furniture carpet beetles are rounded, small, and blackish. They display a mottling of white and yellow scales on their back and have numerous yellow scales on their legs. The pattern of colors varies significantly on adults. In some cases, the yellow scales are more abundant and they are also a bit darker, while in others the white scales are more abundant. Furniture Carpet Beetles often attack upholstered furniture.
Females lay about 35-100 eggs in 1-3 batches. The eggs hatch in about three weeks at room temperature. Larvae develop through 6-12 molts over a period of 3-6 months. They are somewhat elongated, oval-shaped, and thickly covered with brownish hair.
Furniture carpet beetles are usually found on furniture where they feed the woolen upholstering, feathers, padding, and hair. They also commonly feed on silk, horns, bristles, fur, carpets, and other such materials. When stained with animal body oils, these insects will also feed on such fibers as jute, rayon, cotton, and linen.
- Varied Carpet Beetles
Varied carpet beetles are also very common. As compared to black carpet beetles, they are much smaller. When viewed from above, the body shape of adult varied carpet beetles is more rounded and their pattern includes yellow, brown, and white scales on their wing covers’ upper surface.
Females lay their eggs in different places. The eggs hatch in about 17-18 days. Larvae develop through 7-8 molts over a period of 7-11 months. Mature larvae rarely gain length over 1/4-inch. On the back of their abdomen, they have three pairs of hair tufts and they are reddish-brown in color.
The larvae of varied carpet beetles are scavengers. Indoors, they are usually found in carpets, woolens, insect collections, and other fabrics. Outdoors, they are common in the nests of spiders and birds, as well as on dead animal fur, bone, and feathers. They also feed on various plant products like red pepper, corn, rye meal, etc.
- Common Carpet Beetles
Common carpet beetles are rounded, small, and they feature a gray to blackish color, with a pattern of orange and white scales on their back. On middle of their back, they have an red-orange band of scales.
Female common carpet beetle lays about 30-40 white eggs that hatch in about 10-20 days. Larvae are quite active and they move around rapidly. Their body is oval shaped and elongated and they are rarely over 1/4-inch long. They have a reddish-brown color and they are covered with brown or black hair.
Common carpet beetles develop through six molts over a period of 70 days. In the last larval skin, pupation occurs and the pupal stage lasts for about 12-15 days. However, the beetle usually remains in the old skin for about eighteen days before it becomes active. Adult common carpet beetles feed on pollen and nectar in flowers. Larvae often attack carpets, but also eat museum specimens, silk, feathers, furs, etc.
These are the most common types of carpet beetles. Together, they are more destructive to fabric than Clothes Moths. So, if you have a beetle infestation, it is highly recommended that you call a reliable pest control company so that the beetles are eradicated quickly and effectively.