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The first weapon for controlling either beetle is the vacuum cleaner removing dead insects, hair, skin cells etc removes food sources, as well as removing the beetles and larvae themselves. Remove any bird or insect nests obviously in the vicinity.
Steam cleaners are a great tool. Hot soapy water kills all carpet beetle stages, dry clean clothing and furs hang moth balls in closets, use insecticidal powder in cracks and crevices and around carpet edges residual insecticidal sprays and smoke bombs can be used to treat carpet surfaces and soft furnishings.


The variegated carpet beetle and the furniture carpet beetle are very hard to control but methods are basically the same for both.

adult beetles measure 1.5-3.5mm long, bodies are spherical with irregular white, brown/black and yellow patches.
larvae (woolly bears) measure 4-5mm, brown (furniture carpet beetle) or striped (variegated carpet beetle) in colour with dense large hairs. 
Furniture carpet beetle larvae have a long pencil of hairs at the rear end which vibrate continuously. variegated carpet beetle larvae have three tufts of hair at the rear.


  • The life cycle of a carpet beetle ranges from two months to several years in length. 
  • Larval food sources play a significant role in determining the duration of a carpet beetle's growth cycle.
  • The adult female can lay her eggs indoors, although she may also infest the nests of birds, mice and other insects. 
  • After mating near sources of light, females can lay more than 100 eggs at a time, which will hatch into larvae within seven to 35 days. 
  • Adults are capable fliers; therefore, carpet beetles can move from room to room, allowing for rapid infestation. 
  • Carpet beetle larvae feed on feathers, fur, silk, wool and other natural materials. 
  • Larvae can survive for several weeks without food.
  • The duration of the carpet beetle's pupal phase varies, and adult carpet beetles emerge in spring or summer. 
  • Carpet beetle young develop into adults within nine months to two years, while adults survive only a few weeks.
  • Habitats

    Carpet beetles feed on a wide range of animal-based items, including silk, leather, fur, wool and animal hair.  As a result, carpet beetles may infest carpets, upholstered furniture, blankets, coats, comforters, wool, pillows and clothing. While carpet beetles rarely attack synthetic fabrics, they may feed on these items when they are soiled by perspiration, oil and food.

  • Adult carpet beetles feed on pollen and nectar outdoors. 
  • The larvae may eat seeds, animal food and other milled products in the pantry or kitchen. 
  • Although adult carpet beetles can thrive inside or outside, females prefer to lay eggs where larval food sources are abundant. 
  • Carpet beetles enter homes through doors, windows and other openings, although they may be brought in on cut plants and flowers, as well. 
  • Some carpet beetles make their homes inside the nests of birds or other animals and can live in walls or chimneys, feeding on dead insects and animals.

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