i searched everywhere and could NOT find this thing

Asked April 8, 2020, 3:23 PM EDT

I dont know what this is and it would be EXTREMELY helpful to help identify this.

Queens County New York

5 Responses

Thank you for contacting eXtension. Did you have a photo to attach? None came through with your question but you can reply here and use the "choose file" buttons to attach up to three photos. I will forward your question to an expert.

Sorry, here is the photo.

Thanks, I just have a few more questions that will probably help the person who gets this question. 1) What is the approximate size? If you don't know in cm/inches, compare it to a known object (i.e., "the diameter of a US dime") and 2) where did it appear? If it wasn't in Queens County, NY, then let us know that but also was in the house or outside, sunny spot, wet area, etc.

The more details you can provide, the better the likelihood that someone will be able to help you.

We found it on our couch and it is 3 quarters of a centimeter

It's difficult to tell, but that might be the larva of a black carpet beetle (Attagenus sp.). There are 9 species of black carpet beetles in North America, the most common of which is A. unicolor, the black carpet beetle (I know, confusing common names).

Carpets beetle larvae feed on any dry organic matter, such as leather, wool, silk, and fur, as well as hair and other detritus that builds up in carpet and in cracks in hardwood floors. They also occasionally infest stored food products, taxidermy mounts, wool coats, dried flower arrangements, dead insects (such as collect in the wall voids of homes that get infested by overwintering insects like brown marmorated stink bugs), and other products made from dry organic matter. Carpet beetles are present in most homes at low levels that are not cause for concern, although they can sometimes outbreak and become an issue.

If it's determined that the carpet beetles need to be controlled, the best way is find what the larvae are feeding on and eliminate it. In a pantry, this would including throwing out infested food products, freezing seemingly uninfested products, and cleaning out the pantry to make sure there are no flour spills. When an infestation is spread more generally through the house, one first step is to to increase vacuuming in the room it was found and nearby rooms to once a day or at least a few times a week in order to eliminate hair and dust the larvae feed on, which also helps by physically removing larvae and adults.