There are two different species of Carpet Beetle which are fabric pests, the Variegated Carpet Beetle and the Black Carpet Beetle.
It is only the larva of these species that feeds on fabrics such as woollen carpets (they do not attack synthetic carpets), fur, silk and feathers etc. The adults feed on pollen from flowers. Bringing fresh flowers into a building that contain the adult beetles is often the origin of the infestation.
They can fly and are attracted to light, often found clustered near windows. The larva eat small round holes in curtains, tapestry and clothes.
Variegated Carpet Beetle
Adult: A number of different patterns and colours, but in general between 2-3mm long with a mottled pattern of white, brown and yellow scales with fine long greyish-yellow scales underneath. A rounded shape. Lays 40 eggs maturing in 4 months.
Larva: At maturity 8mm long, tapering to the rear with long hairs. The larva is tapered with short tufts of hair at the front the widest and short tufts of hair at the rear cover the body.
Black Carpet Beetle
Adult: Is a black/brown colour with an oval shape with brownish legs, between 3-5mm long. Female very prolific, laying 50 to 100 eggs over 3 weeks and maturing in 1 year.
Larva: At maturity 4-5mm long with a series of light and dark brown stripes.