5 Tiny Black Bugs That Look Like Poppy Seeds

Some bugs in homes that leave the nastiest of bites look like poppy seeds and sesame seeds.

These bugs invade homes. 

And if you don’t get rid of these poppy seeds look-alikes, they’ll spread quickly in bedrooms and kitchens.

However, some poppy seed look-alike bugs can be damaging plant pests too.

This guide will reveal five tiny black bugs that look like poppy seeds

Not all these bugs are typically black. They can be dark brown or dark red, making them appear black.

You’ll learn to identify these bugs and their sources. You’ll also learn some quick hacks to get rid of them. 

You’ll also find the bugs that leave behind their poop and eggs that look like poppy seeds.

Sightings of their feces and eggs indicate their presence, which must ring your alarm bells.

Keep reading.

Tiny Black Bugs That Look Like Poppy Seeds

  1. Bed bugs 
  2. Engorged ticks
  3. Moss mites
  4. Black aphids
  5. Black carpet beetles

Bed Bugs – These Blood-Sucking Human Biting Bugs Look Like Poppy Seeds When They Had Their Blood Meals

If one room has bed bugs, do they all

Bed bugs need no introduction. These are a nightmare that any home can have.

Bed bugs are dark brown. They look black, especially when they have had their blood meals.

Bed bugs are flat when they haven’t had their blood meals. That’s the time when they look like flat apple seeds.

When they had their blood meals, bed bugs slightly bloat, making them look like poppy seeds.

Bed bug infestation in homes begins when a single bed bug carrying eggs enters your home.

Bed bugs spread from one home to another by hitchhiking on things like clothes, furniture, luggage, and cardboard boxes that you bring in from infested places.

Initially, they can be hard to spot when their numbers are low.

They follow you to your bedroom by using the carbon dioxide and the smell of your sweat as a guide. 

And they hide in your bed. 

Bed bugs like beds because they’re closest to their hosts in your bed, which is you.

They’ll come out of hiding during the night when you’re asleep to feed on your blood. 

During the day, bed bugs hide in the thin gaps and cracks in the bed frame and nearby furniture. 

When their numbers increase, bed bugs will spread all over your home from one room to another.

And they can even hide in the unlikeliest places, like crevices in the walls and floor

You can get rid of bed bugs when their numbers are down. 

The best way to get rid of bed bugs in your bed mattress, couch, rugs, and carpets are by cleaning them with a steam cleaner.

If there’s something that guarantees bed bug removal, it’s the heat. And steam cleaners produce heat.

The heat from the steam cleaner will kill bed bugs belonging to all life stages – adult bed bugs, their eggs, the nymphs, and the pupae.

But if the infestation levels increase, they’ll spread far and wide inside your home.

In that case, you’ll need a professional exterminator.

Engorged Ticks – They Look Absolutely Like Poppy Seeds

Tiny black bugs that look like poppy seeds - Engorged Ticks

Engorged ticks are ticks that have had their blood meals. They turn brownish-black after the blood meals.

After consuming blood, ticks bloat, and they start to look like poppy seeds.

So, if you’re noticing them in your home, it should be a cause of worry. 

Ticks carry pathogens that can cause diseases like Lyme disease. 

Your pets can also have a ticks problem.

If you’ve noticed engorged ticks in your home and got itchy welts on your skin, see a doctor asap.

But there’s a catch.

These ticks can be hard to notice. 

Their numbers don’t increase as fast in a human home as the bed bugs or fleas.

Like many other blood-sucking bugs, ticks will hide in places closest to their hosts.

So, bed mattresses and other soft furnishings are where you can find them.

On inspecting the cracks, crevices, folds, and seams on your bed, couch, and rugs, you may find them hiding in these places.

Kill those ticks by using a steam cleaner or an insecticide spray. 

Moss Mites – The Tiny Black Bugs On Plants That Look Like Poppy Seeds

Tiny black bugs that look like poppy seeds - moss mites

Moss mites, also known as oribatid mites, armored mites, or beetle mites, are tiny black mites in your garden or yard. 

They are tiny, circular, grow only 1 mm in size, and look like poppy seeds on plants.

But unlike the previous poppy seeds look-alikes, moss mites are beneficial bugs.

They play a valuable role in decomposing organic matter, soil formation, and making the soil rich in nutrients.

Moss mites have rigid, shiny black bodies to protect themselves from predators like centipedes and ants.

The most common places where you’ll notice moss mites are in the shaded areas of your garden. 

They’ll flock underneath the plants’ leaves and are noticeable on the soil and compost piles.

Unlike spider mites, moss mites don’t target fresh and healthy leaves. Instead, they go for the dying leaves.

The best part is that most mites are harmless bugs. 

They don’t damage plants, and neither they bring any risk to you or your pets.

Moss mites could latch onto your dog’s body if your dog were playing on a surface with moss mites. 

These moss mites are tiny black bugs on dogs that look like poppy seeds.

Unlike fleas, moss mites will not go deep inside your pet’s fur to reach its skin. 

Fleas do that to put their mouthparts inside your pet’s skin to draw their blood.

Moss mites will be on the upper layer of your pet’s fur, making it easy to spot them. 

You can effortlessly remove the moss mites from your dog’s fur with a comb or pincher.

Unlike fleas, moss mites won’t bite your dog or drink your dog’s blood.  

Many people confuse moss mites with flea beetles. 

Flea beetles - little black round bugs
Flea Beetles

It’s because flea beetles are also shiny black, and they flock on the plant’s leaves and branches.

But the shape of flea beetles is different. They’ve got an oblong body shape, not circular.

And flea beetles are a bit bigger than moss mites too. So, flea beetles don’t typically look like poppy seeds.

Flea beetles are strong jumpers. 

Thick vegetation with flea beetles along your home’s perimeter makes it easy for them to jump and get inside your home through the open windows.

Some Species Of Black Aphids On Plants Look Like Poppy Seeds

Black Aphids - Tiny Black Bugs That Look Like Poppy Seeds

There are some species of black aphids on plants that look like poppy seeds. They’re black citrus aphids and black peach aphids.

Both these aphids overwinter during the winter season. With the arrival of spring, both black citrus aphids and black peach aphids become active. 

As their name suggests, black citrus aphids and black peach aphids infest citrus and peach plants, respectively.

They feed on the honeydew and mold that develop on the plants. This feeding process can cause harm to the plants.

Both these aphids are easy prey for many pests, including ants.

Black aphids can draw the red fire ants to your plants, which can cause more damage to your plants.

Therefore, on noticing these black aphids, it’s always best to get rid of them. 

Soapy water is the easiest solution to get rid of aphids of all types. 

Use 2-3 tbsp of dawn dish soap or any dish soap, and mix it with a gallon of water. 

Stir the mixture well and pour it into a spray bottle.

Then spray the mixture on these black aphids. Soapy water will kill the aphids. 

However, you’ll have to repeat the process a few times because aphids can return.

Continue using the dish soap on the plants for a few days till there’s no reappearance of aphids.

You can also use soapy insecticide sprays if there’s a severe black aphids infestation in your garden.

Black Carpet Beetles In Carpets And Rugs Look Like Poppy Seeds

Carpet Beetles Look Like Poppy Seeds

Black carpet beetles are one of the tiny black beetles that invade homes.

They’re both pantry pests and fabric pests that sneak inside homes during the spring and summer months.

These beetles invade homes to lay their eggs on specific products so that their larvae can feed on them.

Natural fabrics like leather, silk, fur, feathers, wool, and taxidermies are these products. 

Black carpet beetles will target woolen carpets and silk carpets, and rugs to lay their eggs. 

They can also target synthetic fabrics blended with natural fibers.

Black carpet beetles look like poppy seeds on the carpet and in your kitchen pantry, albeit a bit bigger.

Carpet beetles can fly inside homes through open doors and windows during the peak season. 

The light from your home can also attract these beetles. 

So, during the spring months, you’ll notice the black carpet beetles crawling on the window sills, trying to make their way inside your home.

Carpet beetles invade pantries too. They’ll target your stored food in the kitchen pantry to lay their eggs.

They’ll specifically target protein-rich food like nuts and cereals. But carpet beetles can also lay their eggs on foodstuffs like flour and grains.

The carpet beetle larvae that will hatch out from the eggs will feed on these stored foods.

If there are too many of them, they can also sneak inside your bedroom looking for natural fabrics.

That’s one of the reasons for sightings of carpet beetle larva in bed.

Steam cleaning carpets, rugs, and other soft furnishings like leather couches is a reliable way to eliminate the damaging carpet beetle larvae.

The heat from the steam cleaner kills the carpet beetle larvae and the eggs of the carpet beetles on the carpet. 

However, it’s always best to thoroughly clean your home, kitchen, and closet to eliminate carpet beetles and their larvae.

Feces Of Bugs That Look Like Poppy Seeds

It’s not only specific bugs that look like poppy seeds, but also the feces of some bugs resemble poppy seeds.

Sightings of bugs’ droppings are a clear indication of their presence in your home. 

There are two invasive and damaging pests whose droppings look like poppy seeds – drywood termites and roaches.

Drywood termites discard their feces through the exit holes they create on the infested wood.

Sightings of their fecal pellets, also known as termite frass, clearly indicate drywood termite infestation in your home.

Drywood termite droppings will look like tiny poppy seeds lying over the floor under the infested wooden structure. 

Termite Fecal Pellets
Termite Fecal Pellets

But termite droppings don’t look clean like sawdust. 

If you see sawdust in your home, there’s a wood-boring beetle infestation in your home. 

Cockroach poop looks like poppy seeds, but they’re not typically black. They’re brownish.

Sightings of cockroach droppings are common in places where they’ve built their nests or near their nesting places.

Cockroach droppings in your home signify their presence. 

If you’re seeing cockroach droppings but no cockroaches, you must inspect your home for roaches. 

The kitchen, bathroom, basement, garage, and attic are where roaches hide. 

The plumbing area underneath sinks and the tight places below appliances are some of the places where roaches hide and nest.

Cockroach infestation is hard to eliminate. You may have to hire a professional pest controller to get rid of them in your home.


The most common tiny black bugs that look like poppy seeds are –

  1. Bed bugs 
  2. Engorged ticks
  3. Moss mites
  4. Black aphids
  5. Black carpet beetles

This guide revealed how and why these poppy seeds look-alikes invade your home and the best ways to get rid of them. 

Feces or roaches and drywood termites also look like poppy seeds, but they are not typically black. 

Sightings of their feces are a clear sign of a home damaging infestation.

Hiring a pest controller for a preliminary inspection is always the best idea if you notice termite droppings or cockroach feces in your home.