[Bugfilter] Identify larvae(?) in clothing storage?
September 23, 2018 9:43 PM   Subscribe

I am doing the seasonal clothing storage swap and found some larvae, I think, in my daughter's clothing storage container. What are they? Not-great pics inside.

I know I can probably google it but I have an irrational fear of moths, and really do not want to be confronted with a page of moth images. Can anyone confirm if these are moths? If not, what are they? Three critters were found in a container of sweaters. Only one was still alive. We are in southwestern Ontario.

I didn't realise how bad my pics were until I'd already gotten rid of the bugs, sorry. Hope they are still identifiable.

See 1 and 2.
posted by methroach to Pets & Animals (8 answers total)
Best answer: Oh, yeah, its really tough to tell from your pics, but if I had to guess I would say beetles not moths. Though what type of beetle, I don't know.
posted by WalkerWestridge at 9:58 PM on September 23, 2018

Best answer: Those aren't clothes moths of the kind I've seen.

I would still freeze and/or dry-clean everything.
posted by praemunire at 10:35 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Best answer: As noted, it's difficult to tell from the pictures, but it looks like carpet beetle to me but the picture is bad enough, it could still be moth larvae. If those are really some stray long hairs on one end or they were a bit hairy, that's likely to be carpet beetle. They still eat woolens, so it doesn't really help you. Clean everything-- steam clean carpets and furniture. Dry clean and freeze if you can't wash on hot.
posted by frumiousb at 1:02 AM on September 24, 2018

Best answer: Definitely look like carpet beetle larvae. They develop into pinhead-sized black or brown beetles. If you feel up to it, google 'Attagenus larvae' and see if better quality photos match what you see.
posted by Gordafarin at 1:23 AM on September 24, 2018

Best answer: It looks like carpet beetles to me. Only the larvae are pests (and will eat holes in non-synthetic fabrics); the (tiny!) beetles are ultimately harmless.
posted by flibbertigibbet at 3:14 AM on September 24, 2018

Best answer: As someone who lives in a building completely infested with clothes moths - those are not clothes moth larvae, or at least not any species I've seen. The ones I've seen are white, and sometimes cover themselves in a sort of spiderweb type fibre whilst eating through your clothes.

For what its worth, woolens can be heat treated in the dryer by drying on hot without washing first - if they're not damp they shouldn't shrink.
posted by stillnocturnal at 4:20 AM on September 24, 2018

Response by poster: Yikes! Glad it's not moths, but doing the image search for carpet beetle larvae confirms it for me. Definitely looked like the pictures I saw. Next step is thorough vacuuming/cleaning/drying. Thanks all!
posted by methroach at 8:36 AM on September 24, 2018

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