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Tiny black specks
Tiny black specks  
QUESTION: We found these tiny black specks on our kitchen floor after being out of town. Then I found more on our counter and some in a drinking glass. They are extremely small and seem to be curled up or in a kidney shape. We had 50 to 100 on the floor that almost looked like dirt and now about 20 more on the counter. Can you tell me what they are? Thank you so much!

ANSWER: Lindsay,

I can't see these clearly enough to id. Can you get a closer picture? Are you finding these clumped together in one area or spread out around the kitchen? How long was the house empty? Are you finding these near an exterior door or window? One last question - has it rained a lot lately, with standing water outside? Post a follow up and I'll try to help figure this out.

Jack DeAngelis

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

New pic of black specks
New pic of black speck  
QUESTION: We were gone a week but had someone staying in the house with our dog. We are finding them in one half of the kitchen in front of a cart that sits by an interior wall. I had flowers on that cart and threw them out before we left. The ones by the stove were not close to a wall and I have no idea how some ended up in the bottom of a glass in the cabinet. They are stuck to the bottom now. We did not have much recent rain but a little snow last week. We are not finding them in clumps but more sprinkled about in a particular area.  I'm attaching another picture.

I suspect that the those on the glass got there when the glass was set down on the counter. I still can't see them clearly enough to be certain but my guess is they came with the flowers. If you sweep these up that will likely be the end of it. If more appear we'll need to collect a few so they can be examined under magnification, perhaps through your local Extension office. I'm sure there's no reason to be concerned but I would be curious to find out what these are.

Jack DeAngelis

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Jack DeAngelis


I can answer questions about the control of pest insects, spiders, mites and related arthropods. These household pests include termites, carpenter ants, powderpost beetles, nuisance ants, bed bugs, cockroaches, fleas, wasps, and many others. I can also answer questions about using pesticides and other pest control tools such as baits and traps.


I am a retired university extension entomologist. I've taught and conducted research in urban and agricultural entomology. I've published over 70 extension publications, 20 research publications and several books about insects.

Ph.D. in Entomology

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