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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/bugs that look like ticks in the couse


QUESTION: We seem to have a small swarm of these bugs near a window and scattered around the dining room and kitchen.  They move very slow and appear to be almost dying.  I have swept them up but more seem to be appearing and I can not figure out where they are coming from.  Can you help?

Thank you,

ANSWER: Brenda,

Can you get a little closer with the camera, I can't see enough detail? If your camera won't focus any closer (try "macro" mode) send a higher resolution file and I'll enlarge it digitally.

Jack DeAngelis

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QUESTION: try this one....he has 6 legs

ANSWER: Looks like a spider beetle (Ptinidae), see for an Extension bulletin from Penn State. These beetles are completely harmless but can sometimes get into stored foods like cereals and grains. Post a follow up if you have questions after looking over the Extension bulletin.

Jack DeAngelis

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QUESTION: Thank you! I read the info and looked up pics of spider beetles and found a pic of one that looked just like ours with the specks.  Now i gotta see if i can find the source, but knowing  its not harmful really helps.  Thank you again!

Start checking any stored foods, including dry pet food/bird seed, that has been around longer than a couple of months. Once you locate the source dispose of anything infested, see for suggestions for control of a related beetle.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis


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.


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


Ph.D. in Entomology

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