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The varied carpet beetle (Anthrenus verbasci) is a 3 mm-long beetle belonging to the family Dermestidae.

This beetle in larval form is common in houses where it usually does little or no noticeable harm, but it is a feared pest in natural history museums, where it can seriously damage biological specimens. While adults are pollen grazers, larvae feed on natural fibers and can damage carpets, furniture, clothing and insect collections. As the beetles are extremely common in gardens in the summer it is impossible to eradicate them completely from a normal home. Regular vacuuming will keep their numbers down.

black carpet beetle (Attogenus unicolar)

Appearance

  • Approx. 2-3 mm long.
  • Mottled yellow, white and black.
  • Oval shape similar to a ladybird.

Lifecycle

  • Complete in 9-12 months.
  • Larva up to 4-5 mm long when fully fed.

Habits

  • Damages carpets, underfelt, woollens, fur, feathers.
  • Can attack stored items such as cereals and meat products.

australian carpet beetle (Anthrenocerus australis)

Appearance

  • Approx. 3-5 mm long.
  • Shiny black to dark brown, with brownish legs.

Lifecycle

  • Completes in 6-12 months.
  • Larva up to 7 mm long when fully fed.
  • Reddish brown covered with stiff bristles.

Habits

  • Relatively widespread and destructive.
  • Often associated with bird-nesting in roof cavities.
  • Amongst others, leather, silk, carpet, and felt all at risk of infestation.

Damaged Caused to Carpet by Carpet Beetle

Appearance

  • Approx. 2-3 mm long.
  • Dark body with lighter markings.
  • Oval shaped.

Lifecycle

  • Lifecycle takes 9-12 months
  • Larva reddish brown, covered with bristles.
  • Elongate oval shaped, with some long hairs trailing from tip of abdomen.

Habits

  • Attacks woollens, carpet, felt and underfelt, as well as stored food [e.g. meat products).

variegrated carpet beetle (Anthrenus verbasci)

Appearance

  • Approx. 2-3.5 mm long.
  • Mottled yellow,white and black markings.


Lifecycle

  • Completes lifecycle in 9-12 months.
  • Dark colour larva up to 5 mm long when fully fed.
  • Wide at front, narrow towards the rear.

Habits

  • Can do damage to upholstered furniture, carpets and some stored food products.
  • Not as destructive as black and variegated carpet beetles.

furniture carpet beetle (Anthrenus flavipes)

Damaged Caused to Carpet by Carpet Beetle