Finding bugs in your home or business is never fun. The goal is always to keep them outside. However, bugs try hard to get inside, and it is not uncommon to find them at one time or another.
If you do find bugs in your home or business, it is important to identify them correctly so that you can assess the threat and exterminate them right away. Bed bugs are one of the most common types of intruders, but another common type of bug is carpet beetles.
At first glance, these two look pretty similar, but upon closer inspection, they are quite different. This article will compare carpet beetles vs. bed bugs and discuss the differences and similarities.
Carpet Beetles vs. Bed Bugs: Visual Appearance
Carpet beetles come in several different colors: black, brown, or multicolored. They have sometimes been described as yellow and black ladybugs. They have round bodies that take more of an oval shape and are smaller in size than bed bugs.
Carpet beetles have wing pads but no wings. The eyes of a carpet beetle are so small that they are hard to see. Unlike a bed bug that has protruding eyes. Bed bugs come in fewer varieties when it comes to color. They are generally reddish-brown in appearance and have flatter bodies than carpet beetles.
One of the most noticeable distinctions between bed bugs and carpet beetles is their size. Bed bugs are very small, as small as 3/16 of an inch long. Carpet beetles, on the other hand, are about 1/8 of an inch long and are easier to spot.
Bed bugs and carpet beetles have plenty of similarities in terms of physical appearance. However, if you know what to look for, you’ll easily be able to tell the difference between the two.
Food and Environment
Bed bugs are considered to be nesting bugs. They spend a lot of time hiding, often as a group in a nest. They also like to live within a few feet of their food source (humans or pets). They hide most of the day and appear at night to find food.
While bed bugs can actually move quite fast, they tend to stay in the same area unless their source of food moves.
Carpet beetles do not feed on humans and pets. Their food sources include:
Any fibrous material is a food source for carpet beetles. Similar to bed bugs, carpet beetles like to stay close to their food source, so you’ll find them in boxes, closets, or near clothing or rugs.
Signs of Carpet Beetles vs. Bed Bugs
The first place that you are likely to see carpet beetles is around your windows. You can also find them crawling around your closets, furniture, rugs, or places where you store clothing.
Since carpet beetles are quite a bit bigger than bed bugs, they are easier to spot with the naked eye. Bed bugs are smaller and tend to be good at hiding, but they do leave signs when they are present. If you notice unexplained bites or welts on your skin, you should check for bed bugs.
Bed bugs in large numbers can produce a musty, sweet odor. If you smell this in a bedroom, it’s likely you have a significant infestation. The easiest way to identify bed bugs is to inspect the seams of your mattresses and folds of your bed.
Getting Rid of Carpet Beetles vs. Bed Bugs
Many home and business owners think that simply cleaning and sanitizing an area can get rid of a carpet beetle or bed bug infestation. While this method can remove some of the bugs, it is not likely to remove all of them. An infestation requires a full treatment plan to make sure the bugs go away and stay away.
To treat carpet beetles, you should physically remove as many beetles as possible by hand or by using a vacuum. If you can, place clothing or fabric items in the freezer for two days. You can also dry clean infested clothing and items or treat them with heat for several hours.
Wash all of your bedding and clothing in the area where you’ve identified the bugs to get rid of bed bugs. Use the hottest water and dryer setting you can. Next, vacuum all floors, furniture, bedding, and baseboards in the home or business thoroughly.
You should also steam clean your walls, floors, furniture, and mattress. You can do this yourself with a portable steam cleaner or hire a professional cleaner with knowledge of steaming and bed bugs.
Keeping Carpet Beetles and Bed Bugs Away
While it’s great to understand the differences between carpet beetles and bed bugs, the ultimate goal is to get rid of them and keep them away. The best way to do that is to keep your business and home as clean as possible. If you do find yourself with an infestation, it’s best to call in a professional to ensure all bugs are removed.
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