Beetle Problems on the East Coast
There are different types of beetles in New England that annoy homeowners while seeking shelter indoors. Their presence alone can be a nuisance, but many species also cause serious damage to property.
Most Common Types of Beetles in New England
- House Borer Beetles: Feed on wooden house frames, floors, and paneling. They can weaken structures and prompt costly repairs, as the pests’ larvae tunnel for years inside wood. Signs of house borer beetles include quarter-inch holes in timber, wood dust under infested areas, and faint grinding noises.
- Carpet Beetles: Larvae feed on animal fibers like fur, wool, and feathers. Active during the warm months, they often chew holes in stored sweaters and blankets. Larvae may crawl from room to room and take shelter in wall voids or subfloors. Carpet beetles are the most common type of beetles in a house.
- Powderpost Beetles: Gnaw on untreated wood to get the nitrogen they need to develop. While chewing through homes and furniture, they convert solid wood into a fine powder, hence their name. Powderpost beetles make unsightly holes, but can also reduce property value or weaken structures in severe cases.
- Asian Lady Beetles: Among the least harmful types of beetles in New England. They become nuisances when large swarms come indoors. Often, pests attracted to sun-exposed exterior walls move inside to wait out cold weather. They rarely bite, but Asian lady beetles may stain surfaces when crushed.
Beetles in New England Yards
Lawns with many trees and shrubs often have beetle activity as well. Some local species, like Asian lady beetles, can be beneficial in gardens by eating pest insects. Others, such as invasive Japanese beetles and emerald ash borers, damage trees, crops, and ornamental plants.
Prevention and Control
Homeowners can avoid problems from many types of beetles in New England by blocking entry points in houses. Replace torn screens, close any structural cracks with caulk, and seal window or doorframes. Treating lumber and varnishing furniture can also deter many kinds of wood-infesting pests.