Varied Carpet Beetles

Subject: What bug is this?
Location: Los Angeles
April 4, 2013 10:23 am
Started seeing these little bugs in my carpet last night. I am a clean person, indoor only cat, I am distraught and couldn’t sleep last night knowing what I found. I inspected my cat but could not see anything in her fur and these don’t look like fleas anyway.
May you please tell me?

Varied Carpet Beetles
Varied Carpet Beetles

1) What they are?
2) How they got in my house?
3) How do I get rid of them?
4) How do I prevent this in the future?
Signature: Distraught

Varied Carpet Beetles, but are they mating???
Varied Carpet Beetles, but are they mating???

Dear Distraught,
1)  You have Varied Carpet Beetles,
Anthrenus verbasci.
They are very tiny and they might have entered the home through any small crack, crevice or gap that they found, either in the foundation, around a window or even when you were entering or leaving.  The adults feed on pollen and they might have gained entry into the house by you when you brought yourself or a loved one a bouquet of posies and didn’t notice them among the petals.  According to BugGuide, the larvae of Varied Carpet Beetles “feed [on] keratine and chitine, and may cause considerable damage on wool, fur, feathers, and natural history collections.“
3)  You need to find the larval food supply in your home.  They may even be feeding on items in the pantry.  Pet hair that accumulates might also be a larval food source.
4)  Most likely you cannot as they are a cosmopolitan household pest that is found in even the cleanest of homes.  Vacuum more frequently and that might help.
Two of you photos appear to be a mating pair, though that might be an illusion of the camera.

Varied Carpet Beetles
Varied Carpet Beetles


1 thought on “Varied Carpet Beetles”

  1. I found some on yesterday cleaning my guest room i collected some and i put them on a flat Pringles top poured alchol on them and they died actually it burn ed them .i plan on taking some on a towel today to get the ones in the window hope this help


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