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Insect Identification

Top-down view of a cockroach outline, colored in completely black. The cockroach has two long antennae, 6 legs, and two small protrusions from its back end.

Is something bugging you? Bring a sample by the District office anytime we’re open. The laboratory staff will attempt to identify your sample and, if possible, provide information on resolving your pest issue.

To increase the likelihood that our staff will be able to identify your sample, please:

A top-down view of a carpet beetle.  The beetle outline is completely shaded in black. The beetle is an oval shape, with two short antennae on the head and 6 short legs.
Top-down view of a rat mite outline, colored in completely black, with a few white lines showing what the squiggly digestive tract looks like inside the mite. The mite has 8 legs - two pairs are on the front end of its body and two pairs are on the back end.
  • contain your sample in a closed vial, jar, bag, or other container
  • avoid damaging the sample if possible
  • bring the sample to the office promptly before decomposition begins
  • note when and where you collected the sample, and whether it bit or stung anyone
  • samples on adhesive monitoring traps for mites, bedbugs, and fleas are also ok

In some cases, it may be possible to identify insects and arthropods from photos. You may email photos to For best results taking bug photos, please read this first. You may want to save the sample in case your specimen cannot be identified from your photo.

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