What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

help identifying a bug
Location: New York City
November 27, 2010 9:33 pm
Can you tell me what type of bug this is – see 2 attached photos.
I was told it was a carpenter beetle but it does not seem to match the photos online. I am concerned it might be a bed bug.
I apprecaite any help you can offer.
Signature: ds

Spider Beetle

Dear ds,
It is our casual observation that in recent years, Bed Bug Paranoia has reached epidemic proportions and it affects far more people than actual Bed Bug infestations affect.  Every imaginable household intruder or household visitor becomes suspect as Bed Bug infestation coverage saturates the media.  We in no means intend to disparage the media for attempting to make the public aware of a possible health crisis, but the fallout to the information has the public flocking to extermination services in situations that would be better remedied with a thorough cleaning of the kitchen cupboards.  Your creatures are NOT Bed Bugs.  They are relatively harmless Smooth Spider Beetles,
Gibbium aequinoctiale, which according to BugGuide, is found “Mainly in houses, flour mills, occasionally in warehouses, hospitals, and stores”.  BugGuide also indicates:  “This species is a scavenger, feeding on a wide variety of dead plant and animal materials.  It has become a pest by feeding on dry stored products.”   We would recommend that you search for the source of the infestation, including possibly stored flour products that have been on your kitchen shelf for more than a year, that jumbo size of pet food that saved you $2 but takes Fido a year to consume, or even the cookie crumbs that have fallen between the couch cushions.  Standard extermination services often do nothing to eliminate pantry pests like Spider Beetles because the actual food is not sprayed with the insecticide.

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