Entomology (Study of Bugs)/beetles in bathroom


Hi. I've had these teeny reddish beetles in an upstairs bathroom for over a year now. About 10 or so alive at a time. They weren't a nuisance until now since we are moving our daughter into the bedroom next to it and have been finding a few strays in there. The only thing I am finding is that they could be drugstore or cigarette beetles but they are nowhere near a pantry or any sort of food source and we have not found them in other areas of the house. Any idea what they are and how I can get rid of them?

Dear Katy - I cannot tell for certain from your image, but its overall appearance is consistent with it being a cigarette beetle - see http://tinyurl.com/dba9uj for more detailed information including control recommendations. Just to be on the safe side, you mighty try putting a few of them in a small container and take them to your county office of the University of Illinois' Cooperative Extension service (see http://tinyurl.com/3wha9bx for contact information). Someone there should be able to assist in identification as well as provide 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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