Adult carpet beetles lay their eggs near food source. The eggs hatch into larvae which feed on the surface of the material, or inside the material. The larvae feed for several months, then pupate. Adult beetles emerge in spring or summer. The complete life cycle from egg to adult takes nine to twelve months.
Adult beetle length is 3mm – 5mm. Larvae length about 5mm.
Insecticides should only be used in combination with efforts that provide a thorough cleanout of potential breeding sites and vacuuming/removal of existing insects. Alone they will not effectively manage carpet beetles in most cases.
Black Carpet Beetle Larvae (Attagenus Unicolour)
Photo courtesy of USDA ARS
Carpet Beetle (Anthrenus Verbasci) Stages: from larva to adult (left to right)
Carpet Beetle (Anthrenus Verbasci): larva (left) and adult (right)