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Carpet Beetles and Clothes Moths: Identifying Ireland’s Pesky Insects

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Carpet Beetles and Clothes Moths

Like residents of many overly populated countries, residents of Ireland suffer from pesky insects inhabiting their homes. These pests often settle in our carpets and clothes, creating massive maintenance problems for homeowners and health issues for property residents.

Pests inhabiting our properties are a huge issue that can escalate into health risks. These tiny invaders are adept at causing damage to carpets, clothing, upholstery, and other fabric materials, making them a nuisance for homeowners and businesses alike. Identifying the usual suspects can help you avoid such insect offences in the future and deal with any pests that may have already invaded your home, carpets, and clothes.

1. Carpet Beetles

Carpet Beetles Larva (Anthrenus) Owl Pest Control

Carpet beetles are small, oval-shaped insects belonging to the family Dermestidae. They are common household pests in Ireland and their larvae are attracted to natural fibres such as wool, silk, feathers, and fur. Carpet beetle larvae, in particular, are voracious feeders and can cause extensive damage to carpets, rugs, upholstery, and clothing.

Although carpet beetles don’t threaten human health, they can often cause allergic reactions. The damage to carpets and rugs can lead to significant maintenance and repair costs.


Adult carpet beetles are typically small (about 1/8 to 3/16 inches long) and have rounded bodies covered in scales. Depending on the species, they may be black, brown, or mottled in colour. Carpet beetle larvae are elongated and covered in bristly hairs, resembling tiny caterpillars. They are often brown or tan with dark bands or stripes.


Carpet beetle larvae feed on natural fibres found in carpets, clothing, upholstered furniture, and other household items. They can cause irregular holes, thinning, and damage to fabric surfaces, eventually leading to property damage. Damage from carpet beetles is often concentrated in areas where food sources are abundant, such as under furniture, along baseboards, and in closets where clothing and textiles are stored.

Prevention and Control:

Regular vacuuming and cleaning carpets, rugs, and upholstered furniture can help remove debris and food sources that attract carpet beetles. Store clothing and textiles in sealed containers or garment bags to prevent infestations. Use insecticides labelled for carpet beetle control as a last resort, following all safety instructions and guidelines.

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2. Clothes Moths

Residents of Ireland commonly have to deal with clothes moths, a textile pest inhabiting many regions with temperate climates. These pests are attracted to natural fibres such as wool, silk, fur, and feathers. Therefore, homeowners should be wary of the insects in their closets, wardrobes, and storage areas, as they are prime breeding grounds for infestations.


There are two main species of clothes moths: the webbing clothes moth (Tineola bisselliella) and the casemaking clothes moth (Tinea pellionella).

Adult clothes moths are tiny (about 1/4 to 1/2 inches long) and have narrow, elongated wings that are often buff-coloured or light grey. The clothes moth larvae are tiny, whitish caterpillars with brown heads. They spin silk webbing as they feed and may construct protective cases from fibres and debris.


Clothes moth larvae feed on natural fibres found in clothing, blankets, upholstery, and other textiles. They prefer dark, undisturbed areas such as closets, drawers, and attics. Damage from clothes moth larvae typically appears as irregular holes or patches of missing fabric, especially in wool, silk, and cashmere garments.


Prevention and Control

If you wish to prevent clothes moths in your home, we advise that you regularly inspect clothing, textiles, and stored items for signs of moth activity, such as webbing, cocoons, or damage. Launder or dry-clean clothing before storing it for long periods to remove potential food sources for clothes moth larvae. Use moth traps or pheromone traps to monitor and capture adult moths, helping to reduce breeding populations. Consider using insecticides or insect growth regulators (IGRs) labelled for clothes moth control if infestations are severe, following all safety precautions and guidelines.

In any case of pest home invasion, keeping your home and textiles clean is essential. Regular inspections on your property help prevent pests and insects from inhabiting your home. If you fear carpet and clothes invaders are living in your home and damaging your textiles but can not handle them, consider contacting pest control companies to help you with the pest invasion problem in Ireland.

In conclusion, identifying and addressing infestations of carpet beetles and clothes moths in Ireland requires vigilance, regular maintenance, and proper storage practices. Homeowners and businesses can protect their valuable textiles from these pesky invaders by taking proactive measures to prevent infestations and promptly addressing any signs of pest activity.

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