It is not uncommon to be minding your own business lounging on the couch when you look over at your rug and notice something crawling there. Upon inspection, you have no idea what kind of insect it is, but it’s just a little round bug so you either leave it be or dispose of it and move on with the rest of your day not giving it another thought. There is a very good chance that bug was a mature carpet beetle. Is that a big deal? As it turns out, yes, it is, in fact, a big deal.
Carpet beetles are a family of insects that are a common household pest. They get their name because of what their young, called larvae, eat. The adults feed on nectar from flowers and love the sunlight, but the larvae love to hang out in darker areas like the cushions of your sofa, deep inside your closet, in pillows, and perhaps even in some stored clothing. Why? Because they’re hungry! Carpet beetle larvae feed on various plant and animal based products including textiles, animal fur or dander, and even feathers.
You might be thinking that it was just one beetle, however, that one beetle may very well have laid 25 or more eggs somewhere inside your home. Adults only live for up to eight weeks, but the young can stay in the larvae stage for months. These infestations tend to go unnoticed leaving them ample time to do serious damage to a variety of materials before you see it.
Luckily, you can do a lot to prevent your home from becoming a hospitable environment for carpet beetles. First, when it is time to put away those seasonal clothes or store extra blankets, make sure you wash them or get them dry-cleaned before you do so and make sure that you are storing them in insect-proof containers. Then, make sure that thoroughly vacuuming your home is a regular part of your routine - be certain not to forget to include furniture. This picks up animal dander and hair as well as carpet beetles or larvae that are already there. Be sure that you are getting all areas including the corners and under furniture regularly. Make washing your bedding and cleaning pet bedding a regular part of your routine as well. Take care to remove dust that can collect on and under furniture. Hidden, dusty spots are ideal for laying eggs for the adult carpet beetle.
If you find signs of damage that you can’t explain, call in a professional like Witt Pest Management. Spraying expensive insecticides that you picked up at the hardware store can be dangerous to your family and pets; and frankly, they rarely get all of the pests that you were aiming for. Witt Pest Management’s trained technicians will get carpet beetles out of your home quickly and safely – and can protect your home from these and other insects year-round with our comprehensive pest protection plans. Give us a call today to see how we can help you become and remain pest-free.