Entomology (Study of Bugs)/identify bug

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Question
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I would be so grateful if you could identify this bug for me.  I am seeing them (only ever one at a time) crawling upwards from the floor on my living room wall, always in the same place.  No sign of them in the carpet, but one appears every few days.  This has been occurring for some months.  I enclose a picture of one I placed on a tissue so you can see its size.

Answer
Joan,

Excellent photo. This is a dermestid beetle larva, also called carpet beetles, see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/carpet_beetle.html for more pictures. There are a number of species and the adult beetles and larvae all look a little different. Nowadays infestations are usually in some kind of food like cereal or dry pet food. See the page cited for more info. Post a follow up if you have questions.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology

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