Carpet beetles are members of the family Dermestidae, and while the adult beetles feed on nectar and pollen, the larvae are destructive pests in homes, warehouses, and museums. They feed on animal products including wool, silk, leather, fur, the bristles of hair brushes, pet hair, feathers, and museum specimens. They tend to infest hidden locations and may feed on larger areas of fabrics than do clothes moths, leaving behind specks of excrement and brown, hollow, bristly-looking cast skins. Management of infestations is difficult and is based on exclusion and sanitation where possible, resorting to pesticides when necessary. The beetles can fly in from outdoors and the larvae can survive on lint fragments, dust, and inside the bags of vacuum cleaners. In warehouses and museums, sticky traps baited with suitable pheromones can be used to identify problems, and heating, freezing, spraying the surface with insecticide, and fumigation will kill the insects when suitably applied. Susceptible items can be protected from attack by keeping them in clean airtight containers.
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