Entomology (Study of Bugs)/wierd bugs in my home



Hello Mr. Saugstad,

We’ve moved into a new home and
I am finding two different odd looking bugs in my house.
I am infested with them to be honest.
Before I can do anything to stop the infestation I need to know what they are.
I would really appreciate all the help you can give, what they are, and if you know of a natural way to get rid of them other than harmful pesticides as I have children and cats.
Could you tell me please what it is they eat so I can remove anything that will encourage them to breed. I live in QC, Canada. Hope this helps.
Here is the first, I am finding it all over our clothes, in wicker baskets and on the curtains. I am dusting them up off of the floors as well. 41.jpg

Here is the second, I am finding these guys under the dressers and night tables anything that is on the floor and heavy.
I found at least 100 or more under a mattress in my son’s room which again was on the floor. 100.jpg
Thank you very much for your time


Dear Laura - The first insect is a larva of a case-making clothes moth (Tinea pellionella; Lepidoptera: Tineidae) and the second is a larva of a carpet beetle (Coleoptera: Dermestidae) in the genus Attagenus. Clothes moth larvae feed mainly on dry animal protein, such as hairs and feathers, but they also will eat other materials including cobwebs and bird nests. They also can become pests because they will feed on furs and fabrics such as carpets, upholstery and clothing that contain wool as well as some dry stored food products and wallpaper. Carpet beetle larvae also will feed on an extremely wide variety of organic matter, including accumulations of dead insects such as found in some light fixtures or behind baseboards. Because of this habit, they can be difficult to control, as it is nearly impossible to locate and eliminate all potential food sources. See http://tinyurl.com/753pfmj and http://tinyurl.com/pvgfq3 for fact sheets on clothes moths and carpet beetles, respectively, that include 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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