Firebrats



Firebrats. Thermobia domestica, belong to a primitive group of insects of characteristic appearance, being flattened and carrot-shaped, broad near the head end and tapering toward the rear. They are scaly and wingless and have long slender antennae. Three long slender appendages occur at the rear of the body and give this group the common name of "bristletails".

Firebrats are mottled grayish brown, about inch long.
Firebrat females lay up to 50 eggs in cracks and crevices. Because of the warmth, the eggs hatch in 12-13 days. Nymphs are sexually mature in two to four months and full grown in a year. Adults may live up to two years.

Firebrats prefer very warm areas indoors where temperatures are above 90 F. Indoors they are usually found near heating units, fireplaces, and steam or hot water pipes if these areas are not too dry. Firebrats require some moisture. Both species feed upon starches and proteins, such as fabrics, paper, starches, glue, books and other household furnishings. They leave yellowish stains, especially on linens.
Fabric and carpet


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