Q:

Do carpet beetles bite humans?

A:

Quick Answer

Carpet beetles do not bite, but they can cause an itchy rash called dermatitis. Carpet beetles are sometimes mistaken for bed bugs, but one of the ways to tell them apart is that bed bugs can and do bite.

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Full Answer

Carpet beetles are harmless and mostly vegetarians, eating a diet of natural fibers. One reason they are attracted to people sleeping is because of the carbon dioxide that is exhaled and the presence of natural fibers like feathers and wool in blankets and comforters. Steam cleaning carpets is an effective remedy for carpet beetles because it gets rid of their larvae.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What do carpet beetles look like?

    A:

    The appearance of carpet beetles varies depending on their stage in life; young larvae resemble millipedes, while adults have dark brown to black shells and have distinct oval shapes. Beetles grow quickly, and as such, move rapidly through different stages of appearance. They shed their shells and skin as they grow, and they change shapes and colors frequently.

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  • Q:

    Do beetles bite humans?

    A:

    Most beetles have the capacity to bite humans, but the majority are peaceful creatures that are not inclined to bite. Scientists estimate that the world is home to between 4 million and 8 million beetle species, making broad generalizations difficult.

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  • Q:

    How do you identify common beetles?

    A:

    Identify common beetles by using beetle and insect identification tools from some online education and resource sites, such as VirginiaTech and Insectidentification.org. These sites also display images and descriptions of different types of beetles in North America.

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  • Q:

    What eats beetles?

    A:

    Beetles are eaten by predators such as wasps, spiders, ants, mice, rats, moles shrews, salamanders, frogs, toads, birds, skunks and other beetles. In order to avoid being eaten, beetles run or hide in a tunnel when they are still larvae. A number of beetles have hard shells and can bite when defending themselves and others release toxic chemicals to discourage predators.

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