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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Small black bug found on bed today

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This morning I found a small black bug sitting motionless on top of a blanket that was folded on my bed. I put it in a small plastic container and observed it to be shiny black, looks a little like a beetle, and unfolds wings but hasn't flown (maybe it is exhausted I'm not sure).

I hope very much that it is unrelated but last night while sitting on my bed I got a few itchy spots, very small red bumps that I thought look like mosquito bites. Would this bug possibly be one that likes to bite? It is the only one I found.

Answer
Dear Patty - This is indeed a small beetle, and thus almost surely would not be responsible for any of your bite symptoms. I cannot tell for certain from your images, but it might be a black carpet beetle or a relative. Be on the lookout for slender larvae having a bristly 'tail' as in this image: http://tinyurl.com/lrslnk6
 If you find any, see http://tinyurl.com/3jwyyt9 for some control recommendations.

Hope this helps,
Saugy

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad

Expertise

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.

Experience

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.

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

Publications
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.

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

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