Currently viewing the category: "Pantry Beetles, Grain Weevils, Spider Beetles, Meal Worms and Carpet Beetles"
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Beetle and Larvae?
Location: Kotzebue, Alaska
April 18, 2011 11:57 pm
I am finding these beetles all over the house on the floor, and I just scooped up 7 or 8 of what I believe to be a larvae stage of the beetle. The worms appear to have six legs and at first I thought they were a type of mealworm but I have been finding these beetles all over the house. I live in northern Alaska, close to Russia and I had the bugs outside in sub-zero temperatures and they are still alive. It is strange to me that even with the extreme cold they are still alive. What can they be? The beetles are black and all have a white stripe halfway down the shell.
Signature: Alaskan

Larder Beetle and Larvae

Dear Alaskan,
You have submitted a photo of a Larder Beetle and Larder Beetle Larvae,
Dermestes lardarius.  These are pests of stored foods but they may also infest museum specimens like stuffed animals.  If they are not in your pantry, you may want to closely inspect your taxidermy specimens like hunting trophies.  We are postdating this entry to go live during our holiday later in the week.

They are not only in the pantry, we have been finding them on the floors on the corners of the wall. Even with the best of insulation it is not un-common for insects and mice to spend the winter within a house’s insulation in our area so I assumed they were just one of our winter visitors waking up for Spring. The ones I caught are still alive and kicking somewhere outside so any future beetles I find are heading outside as well, thank you for the ID!

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What kind of bug is this?
Location: Shoreham, NY
April 6, 2011 9:38 pm
Hi,
I’ve found several of these little critters all over my house – in the kitchen, in the bathroom, on random walls and on the rugs. They are very sluggish and tend to just sit there making them easy targets to do away with. They are black with a white or brownish band and are about a millimeter long. My home is located in a development which is surrounded by woods and the dirt the area is mostly clay if that helps. I first started seeing them this winter. It was very and very snowy. I saw them again today it had rained both yesterday and this evening. Thank for your help.
Signature: Lost in the Woods

Larder Beetle

Dear Lost,
You have Larder Beetles, a common pest of stored food products that has a cosmopolitan distribution.  Clean out the pantry and you should find the source of the infestation.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What is this bug?
Location: New York City
March 30, 2011 8:30 pm
I have found two in my apartment in the past week crawling on the walls. I know this is certainly not a bed bug. It has a large back section with a lump of sorts. Dark brown to black. When killed it makes a cracking sound or small pop.
Signature: Daniel H

Might this be a Carpet Beetle or Spider Beetle?

Dear Daniel,
A properly exposed and carefully focused image of high resolution is very helpful when it comes to proper identification.  The image you have supplied has none of those qualities, and if this image was submitted by one of our students of photography, that student would not receive a passing grade for the assignment.  An exact identification is nearly impossible in this case.  When the photos are lacking, often the information provided in an email can assist us in an identification.  Many insects make unique sounds that can also be used toward an identification, but most bugs will crack or pop upon being smashed so that auditory description is not much help either.  Since it is small and has been found indoors, we suspect this is most likely either a Carpet Beetle or a  Spider Beetle and you may find some excellent images of both in our archives.

Dear Daniel-
Yes, upon further inspection it appears it is a spider beelte.  I will try to take a better shot next time.  Thanks you for taking time out to help me.
Daniel

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A very big & gracious……….THANK U SO VERY MUCH
March 30, 2011 11:10 am
I’m an absolute virgin to the internet, but am very grateful to your site.      I have identified that I have an infestation of the varied carpet beetle (NOT bed bugs as was my 1st thought).                                   My QUESTION is:     How do I deter and remove them from my home without KILLING or HARMING them in anyway? ….. Also ….. what outside habitat do the prefer, IF – I’m able to find them.?                           I do know & understand u r a small group of volunteers, that you have a lot of work to do for your site and u cant possibly read or reply to all the questions & queries sent to u.  If u do happen to read this it would be most appreciated if u dont have the answers if  can give me another web address where I can find my answers.               Yours   Truly & Utterly Grateful,                from  Shelley,frae SCOTLAND.   U.K.
Signature: Shelley

Carpet Beetles

Hi Shelley,
Your complimentary email touched us and we want you to know that we do not frown upon “internet virgins” visiting our website.  We are happy to hear you had a good experience.  We have chosen a photo from our archives of Varied Carpet Beetles,
Anthrenus verbasci, taken by Tina, to accompany your letter.  This particular photo shows the adults in their preferred habitat, the garden.  Adult Varied Carpet Beetles feed upon pollen, and were it not for the potentially destructive tendencies of the larvae, which feed upon organic fibers, they might be considered a beneficial species.  Varied Carpet Beetles have adapted to living with humans, and they are one of the most commonly encountered species to be found in the home.  Because the larvae may damage woolen rugs and other articles made of fur and feathers they are considered a household pest, but they also feed upon accumulated pet hair in the home.  Adults are most commonly noticed on window sills.  They need to get outside to feed upon pollen, and the adults will not damage the home.  We would suggest a small whisk broom and dust pan for capturing the adults so that they may be released outdoors.  Frequent vacuuming under beds and under couch cushions and similar locations will minimize the presence of the larvae and then reduce the numbers of adults you find indoors.  Identification requests of both adult and larval Carpet Beetles have been among our most common queries this year.  We seriously contemplated making the Carpet Beetle the Bug of the Month again this past winter.  Instead, we have been regularly highlighting it in our relatively new featured section at the top of our home page.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Weird Bug
Location: South East Texas
March 24, 2011 4:43 pm
Mr. or Mrs. Bugman…
I have a black little bug…about a millimeter long…oval shaped…light colored spots…crawls but has wings…
Thought it was a ladybug; but can’t find any pics of it. HELP PLEASE.
Signature: Infested

Carpet Beetles

Dear Infested,
You have Carpet Beetles.  The larvae feed on wool and other types of animal fibers and the adults are pollen feeders.  When the beetles mature, large quantities of the adult accumulate on windowsills in an attempt to reach the outside where the flowers are blooming.  Larvae can do tremendous damage to museum collections as well as home furnishings.

Carpet Beetles

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Strange House Tick?
Location: Chicago, IL
March 17, 2011 7:10 pm
Dear Bugman/Bugwoman,
We were living in a damp, dark basement apartment and started seeing these strange bugs about a month ago. We probably found 3 or 4 and then we moved to a new apartment a week ago and they seem to have followed us. We’ve already found 3 of them crawling around on our stuff. I’m feeling paranoid that we’re infested with something! Is there any way you can help me identify our unwelcome stowaway? I have attached 2 pictures. They aren’t the clearest, but maybe they will be enough. If you need another picture I can send some. I captured a couple of the bugs so I could try to figure out what they were.
Thanks for your help.
Sincerely,
Signature: Ed

Spider Beetle

Hi Ed,
There are many small beetles that infest stored foods, and many of them have a cosmopolitan distribution.  This is a Spider Beetle, most likely in the genus
Mezium as your photo, though blurry, appears to show a pronotum with furry pubescence which according to BugGuide is a distinguishing feature.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination