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CARPET BEETLE

APPEARANCE

Tan with tiny black, brown and white scales; round and small, up to 1/4-inch.

HABITAT

Outdoors, carpet beetles live in birds nests and animal dens where they can find animal hair and feather on which to feed. Indoors, they feed on natural fibre fabrics such as wool and silk. They may also be found living under carpets and rugs where hair or dead insects have accumulated. They can actually digest human or animal hair. Although not dangerous from a health standpoint, they can substantially damage personal belongings.

DIET

Animal hair, feathers, dead insects and natural fibres, particularly wool and cashmere.

INSECT CONTROL: CARPET BEETLES

Before storing any woollen or natural fibre clothes, clean them according to directions. Zippered plastic containers are better than boxes for storage. If using boxes, they should be thoroughly cleaned beforehand and sealed with tape afterwards. Do not store the boxes in your attic, garage or basement if possible. Mothballs leave a strong odour but will help deter fabric pests.

CLOTHES MOTH

APPEARANCE

Cream or white, about 3/8-inch. Larvae often leave strands of the silk they spin on fabrics.

HABITAT

As their name implies, clothes moths live in clothing, carpets, fabrics and furs. They can fly but usually hide in dark corners or in the folds of fabric. While not particularly dangerous, they can do real damage to clothes and other fabrics.

DIET

These moths are able to digest animal hairs and feed on any item made of natural fibres, particularly wool and cashmere.

INSECT CONTROL: CLOTHES MOTH

Before storing any woollen or natural fibre clothes, clean them according to directions. Zippered plastic storage units are better than boxes. If using boxes, they should be thoroughly cleaned beforehand and sealed with tape afterwards. Do not store the boxes in your attic, garage or basement if possible. Mothballs leave a strong odour but will help deter fabric pests.

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