Pest Identification

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Varied Carpet Beetle Exterminator

Varied Carpet Beetle

Varied Carpet Beetle

Description:
 Adult varied carpet beetles are 1/16- to 1/8-inch long and generally oval in appearance.  The wing covers meet at the rear end of he body in a smoothly rounded fashion with no apparent cleft.  The backs of these insects are spotted with gray-yellow, brown and white scales, which form two bands across the top.  The underside of the body is gray to yellow.
 The larvae are about 3/16-to ¼ inch long and wider at end of the body than the head.   They are covered with a series of light and dark-brown stripes that run across the body.  They have three dense tufts of bristles at the rear-end of the body that extend outward when they are disturbed.
 
Biology:
 Females lay about 40 eggs in a lifetime; eggs hatch in 10 to 20 days.  The larvae develop in 222 to 323 days and remain as pupae for 10 to 13 days.  There is one generation per year.  The adult beetles live 14 to 44 days.

Habits:
The larvae feed on a variety of foods, including carpets, woolens, skins, furs, stuffed animals, leather binding on books, feathers, silk, and plant products (e.g., cacao, corn, and red pepper).  The favorite larval food, however, is dried insects or spiders, and, thus, these insects are terrible pests in dried insect collections.  Adults feed on pollen, are good fliers, and enter homes through open windows.