Mature larva is reddish-brown, clothed with numerous black or brown hairs, and about 2.5 to 3.5 mm in length. Adults are small, oval beetles about 3 mm in length and blackish in colour with coloured scales down the middle of the back.
Besides carpets, as the name suggests, larvae carpet beetles attack woollen and other animal products that are left undisturbed, such as feathers, leather, furs, hairbrushes, silks, and pressed plants. Adults feed on pollen and nectar.
Often, carpet beetles fly into the home through cracks and crevices and are easily unnoticed by humans. Adults and larvae may be seen crawling on surfaces and carpeting, and can chew holes in infested items.