Have you ever found a bug (or dead bug!) in your home and thought, “What on earth is that?” You’re not alone! Our Mystery Pest blog series is designed to help you identify and treat any mystery pest problems, plus give you some tips on how to prevent them in the future! Our first candidates are Carpet Beetles.
Subscribe to our mailing list to be notified about this series and other blog posts from Kennedy Pest Control.
Life in Southern California is pretty good. Compared to other regions, we’re fortunate to have warm weather all year-round. But January and February still get a little chilly, even in temperate San Diego and Riverside. This is the one time of year that many of us decide to turn on the heat in our homes.
Meet the bug that loves the heating in your cozy house or apartment
So what happens when we turn on the thermostat? What we humans perceive as a tiny uptick in temperature happens to be a massive change for bugs! So cranking the heat, even a little bit, often results in the emergence of carpet beetles.
These bugs can be found all year, but your cozy heated home is an especially enticing environment during our relatively mild winters.
Look out for tiny dry “peppercorn” shells on your windowsills
You probably won’t see the carpet beetles crawling around right away. It’s way more likely that you’ll find their molt – a dry, cracked shell of the beetle’s exoskeleton that is about the size of a peppercorn.
These tiny shells are often found on the windowsills of your home, because they love hanging out in the warm sunshine. Turns out, carpet beetles love the San Diego sun as much as we do!
Carpet beetles don’t only love your carpets! Keep an eye on your closets, too
What do carpet beetles love more than a tanning session? Your carpets and clothing. Wool and other textiles are their favorite meal! So keep a close eye on possible food sources, like your closet. Carpet beetles lay their eggs in spots where their larvae can eat right away.
Find carpet beetles at the source
You may be wondering how you prevent carpet beetles from getting inside in the first place! When your front door opens, debris accumulates at the baseboards of your walls. Think about dust, hair from pets and people, and dander. Baseboards are magnets for these things, which are attractive snacks for carpet beetles. Be especially wary in hardwood or tiled homes.
Baseboards are carpet bug magnets
When cleaning the floors of your home, make sure to hit the baseboards thoroughly with your vacuum attachment or broom. Getting rid of these pests before they have a chance to find food and lay their eggs is key to preventing an infestation!
Kick this Charlie Brown bug to the curb
Already infested? Kennedy Pest Control can help. We treat 6 inches up and out from the baseboard with a residual treatment. We use an organic compound derived from African chrysanthemum that kills the pests but is used in microscopic quantities that are harmless to people and pets.
Once we’ve treated your baseboards, we always recommend getting your furniture and carpet steam-cleaned to eradicate any last traces of the pest. Say goodbye to the Charlie Brown bug and hello to a clean, pest-free home!
DIY clothing treatment
Have you found an infestation of carpet beetles in your clothing? Put the items in a contractor bag and place it outside on a warm day. The heat will dislodge the eggs so that you can dispose of the infestation without damaging your clothes.