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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Please help identify mystery bug


Tiny bug with hairs
Tiny bug with hairs  
As I was sorting my dirty laundry that had been sitting in my laundry basket (laundry bag sitting on the floor), I found two tiny brown bugs with hair. They are extremely small and it was difficult to capture a clear picture of them.  Please help identify these bugs and help me determine what is in my house!

Dear Suzann - This is a larva of a carpet beetle (Coleoptera: Dermestidae) in the genus Anthrenus, they will feed on a very wide variety of organic materials including furs, feathers, hides, woolen and silk fabrics, and dried stored food products. See for a fact sheet and for more information, including control recommendations.

Hope this helps,

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad


Will accept most questions in general entomology, including those related to medical entomology, taxonomy, ecology, arthropod surveillance, and pest management. If you are requesting a 'mystery bug' identification, PLEASE either attach an image to your question, or post an image on a web page (such as Flickr) so that I can look at it, as verbal descriptions frequently are insufficient for a definitive identification.


21 years in the U.S. Army as a medical entomologist; duties varied from surveillance of pest populations (including mosquitoes, cockroaches, ticks, and stored products pests) to conducting research on mosquito-virus ecological relationships and mosquito faunal studies. Ten years as a civilian analyst for the Department of Defense, primarily on distribution of vector-borne diseases worldwide. Limited experience on surveillance of agricultural insects in North Dakota and Indiana.

Entomological Society of America, West Virginia Entomological Society, Society for Vector Ecology, National Speleological Society, West Virginia Association for Cave Studies.

American Journal of Public Health, Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, Journal of Economic Entomology, Mosquito News, and Mosquito Systematics.

B.S. in entomology from North Dakota State University in 1963, M.S. in entomology from Purdue University in 1967.

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