Carpet beetles can seem like a mystery. If they've gotten into your home, you might have some confusion. Hopefully, we'll clear up some of that confusion today. Here are 5 things every Pittsburgh property owner should know about carpet beetles.
1. How Carpet Beetles Get In
Adult carpet beetles are flying insects. They fly around outside your home. If you open a window or door that doesn't have a screen, these insects can fly right in. This is often how a carpet beetle infestation begins. But carpet beetles can also be carried into your home on an item that carpet beetle larvae are infesting. This is important to keep in mind if you want to prevent an infestation.
2. Threats Carpet Beetles Pose
These pests are a triple threat. If you have an infestation of carpet beetles in your Pittsburgh property, they can cause harm in these three ways:
Bumpy rash: Some people are allergic to carpet beetles, specifically the hairs on carpet beetle larvae. If you get into a bed with larvae that are feeding on your sheets or blankets, you could wake up with a bumpy rash that looks like bed bug bites.
Damage to belongings: The larvae of carpet beetles can do a lot of damage to your belongings. They feed on furs, hides, feathers, woolen fabrics, horns, hair, silk, bones and more. Take a look at our Most Common Items Damaged By Carpet Beetles article for more insight into what these pests can damage.
Pantry pests: Carpet beetles can feed on plant materials such as grains, spices, and pet foods. This could make them a pantry pest in your home.
3. What Carpet Beetles Look Like
There are four species of carpet beetles that could get into your home. One species is entirely black. Two have a mottled mix of tan, white, and black. One has a fiery orange color down the center. Adult carpet beetles are insects, and they share the characteristics of beetles: six legs, three body parts, and two antennae.
4. What Carpet Beetle Larvae Look Like
A carpet beetle in its larval stage is not an insect. It is a caterpillar. A carpet beetle caterpillar is less than a ½ inch long. Some can be as small as 3/16 of an inch. You'll find them attached to the material they are feeding on. What these larvae look like depends on the species. It is not necessary to be able to differentiate these caterpillars from each other. If you have caterpillars in your home, you should immediately contact a pest control professional and request an inspection.
5. How To Guard Against Carpet Beetle Damage
You can reduce your chances of having a carpet beetle infestation by making sure all of your door and window screens are in good working condition, and when you go in and out of your home through your front door, don't leave it open for too long. It is also important to seal any entry points in your exterior such as cracks in your foundation walls, gaps around pipes, and holes created by wood-destroying pests. For the best protection, you should consider investing in residential pest control services. When you have ongoing pest control service, your home will have a barrier of protection around it that will help to resist and eliminate pest insects like carpet beetles.
What To Do If You Have Carpet Beetles In Your Home
If you live in the Greater Pittsburgh area, contact Witt Pest Management for same-day service. Our team of educated and experienced pest management professionals is standing by to help you correct your pest control problem.