“Is this a carpet beetle larva?” asks this reader in her submission regarding the tiny, brown creature pictured below. “I found it in my bed and I am not sure since it seems smaller than the others. If not a carpet beetle larva, then what is it?” Based on the photo alone, we would say that this is indeed a carpet beetle larva. The stripes, bristles, and shape all point to this conclusion. Carpet beetle larvae are infamous household pests, as they like to munch on textiles much like the sheets on our reader’s bed on which the bug was found. In addition to bed sheets, they like to feed on carpets, rugs, clothing, loose hair and fur, and any other items made from organic materials like cotton, wool, feathers, leather and more.
“What is this?” is all this reader asks about the little brown bug pictured below. Although she provides no context, which is usually imperative to us being able to identify any given organism, we have seen this critter about a thousand times: this is a carpet beetle larva. Carpet beetles are notorious insects that feed on textile items such as clothing, bed sheets and, yes, carpets. As such, they have earned the status of ‘pest’, as infestations of them can cause significant damage to such items in one’s home, and they can often go unnoticed for long periods of time.
“I found these strange, wriggly guys next to my indoor houseplant that I had watered earlier that day”, states this reader in her submission regarding the long, black worm-like creatures pictured below. “They were squirming around outside of the pot. When I looked in the soil, I saw a few more moving around – maybe brought to the surface after the watering? (For size reference they are on a Kleenex and maybe 1-2 inches long.) My plant group and Reddit are both stumped as to what they are! Sorry for the terrible quality but any ideas would be welcome! I’m located in Toronto, Canada. Thank you!”
“Please tell me what these nasty terrible awful things are?” asks this reader in her submission regarding the light brown bug pictured below. “They look like tiny worms, but zooming in on the camera you can see they have lots of little legs. They obviously hatch into something because they leave the worm-like shell behind but I noticed them in my car a few weeks ago. I’ve vacuumed like a madman and it doesn’t seem to be getting rid of them: they just keep multiplying and I’m so freaked out by this that I’m almost ready to take a huge loss on my vehicle! Help! I have no idea how to get rid of these things!”
“What is this?” is all this reader asks about the brown-striped organism with a tail pictured below. Usually, when readers provide no context, it is difficult to identify the organisms in the picture, as we have only their appearance to go on. However, in the case of this little critter, we have seen their like so many times that we know exactly what this is. This is a carpet beetle larva. If any of our other readers have been following our articles for some time, they are probably familiar with this little bugger by now. Carpet beetle larvae are infamous for infesting people’s homes and chewing up all their clothing and furniture, and that is because they will munch on anything that is made from materials that are organic. This includes cotton, wool, silk, feathers and leather, and people can commonly find them in their wardrobe, on their carpets and rugs, on and under their beds, and in their attic. They will even eat loose strands of hair and fur.
“What larva is this?” asks this reader in her submission regarding the brown-striped organism pictured below, which seems to be digging into a piece of food. “It looks similar to a carpet beetle larva, but that doesn’t make sense. I’m in the Southwest United States, and carpet beetles are in Europe, right?” Now, there are a few things to unpack here from our reader’s submission, and we will start with her first question: what larva is this indeed? Well, we think she is right in comparing it to a carpet beetle larva, as it really does resemble one, and that is exactly what we think it is.
“What kind of worms are these and how do I get rid of them?” asks this reader in her submission regarding the translucent, dark-headed creatures pictured below. “They are coming into my house through my microwave (which is my vent hood over my stove) and the bathroom exhaust fan. That’s the only place I’ve seen them but there are always a lot of them. I live in Southwest Louisiana in a double-wide trailer.” To start with, we think these are larvae of some sort of insect: likely a moth or fly. We think this due to their translucent white bodies, which is a common characteristic of moth and fly larvae. However, we do not know specifically what species they would belong to. Since the larvae are coming in through the vents, it is likely that the mother insect laid her eggs in the vent, coming in through the outside. As such, the context does not give any clues as to the species they belong to.
“I found this worm-like creature on my pillow today”, writes this reader in her submission regarding the light brown, striped critter pictured below. “I need help identifying what it is, and would like any other helpful info you may have. It has some strands coming out of one end of it. Thank you!” Firstly, we want to thank our reader right back, for sending in her submission to us. Secondly, we want to present our reader with an identification: the worm-like creature she found is a carpet beetle larvae. Unfortunately for her, carpet beetle larvae are notorious house pests which can spawn massive infestations that can damage a lot of the items in her home.
“The below was found on a carpet near a clothing closet in Manhattan, NYC”, writes this reader in her submission regarding the creature pictured below. “Please advise. Thank you!” The creature in question appears to be striped, with alternating colors of beige and brown, and has an ovate, bristly body. Based on its appearance alone, we would say that this is a carpet beetle larva, though the location it was found in also supports this conclusion.
“What is this bug?” is all this reader asks in her submission. She refers to the creature pictured below, which is brown in color, and appears to have bristles and three pairs of prolegs.
“These are tiny, brown segmented worms”, states this reader in her submission regarding the creature pictured below. “They have something like hair at the ends of their tails.”
“Over the last couple of days, I have been finding two-to-four of these bugs walking around on my ceiling”, states this reader in her submission regarding the light brown, striped organism pictured below. “Do you know what they are and how I can get rid of them?” she asks.
“I keep finding these small caterpillar-like bugs in my bathroom”, states this reader in her submission regarding the bristly, brown worm-like creature pictured below. “Found two in the bathtub, one in the toilet and most just crawling on the tile floor.”
“I have found what looks like a skinny, small worm”, states this reader in Queens, New York. She has not attached any photos, but asks that we provide her any information we can give, “which hopefully would include why this happens.”
“I found this on my mattress when I woke up” says this reader about the segmented, orange-brown creature in the photograph below. “I’m not sure what it is? Maybe you know?” asks our reader in her submission.
“I have found three, tiny, fuzzy, worm-like creatures,” begins this reader in her submission. She states that they look like carpet beetle larvae, and that they have been found in her bathroom by the baseboard. She asks that we tell her what they are and if she should be worried.
“Do carpet beetle larvae get under your skin?” asks this reader in her submission. She reports experiencing a “real infestation that happened in days,” though she sends no photographs with her query.
“I found this at the bottom of my clothes hamper,” says this reader about the brown and white-striped organism pictured below. Although our reader does not pose any questions in her submission, we assume that she wants to know what this is and how to handle it.
This reader shares “microscopic pictures” of “carpet beetle larvae that came out of the skin of [her] foot.” In addition to this, she suffers from a parasitic infection from living with “multiple types of mold.”