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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/hanging insect cocoon?


Hanging in bathroom
Hanging in bathroom  
I live in Mumbai and have found these hanging in the bathroom. Yesterday while cleaning under an old wooden bed I found maybe 50 hanging. Horrible sight. The are usually dangling from ceilings but I have seen them stuck to the wall. They do not seem to move and seem like the shell of something.

Dear Salam,

You are absolutely correct - it is indeed a cocoon. The caterpillar of a small moth barely measuring 1 cm in length, brownish in colour, builds this protective cover around it self and drags itself around it much like a snail. Several moths exhibit this behaviour. The most common family is Tineidae. They are commonly found in homes, especially because of bird nests around.

They are completely harmless creatures. Once they are ready to form a pupa, they select dark places such as the wooden bed as you mentioned. The outer case seen in your photograph is actually made up of tiny dust and fibres found in our homes.

I hope this helps.


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Aniruddha Dhamorikar


I will answer general identification questions about insects and spiders ONLY from India. I cannot guarantee specific identification (of species), but I will try my best! If I do not have the answer, I will get back to you on the right answer as soon as possible.


I have been studying fauna of Indian for several years, as a hobby as well as academically.

B.Sc. Zoology M.Sc. Environmental Science M.E.S.

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