Vrillette - is it my ears, or have I got an exceptionally stupid one?

OK so during the last week, I’ve been hearing a vrillette/deathwatch beetle going tap-tap-tap in my bedroom. I’ve had vrillettes before and I have the Xylophène in the shed.
However last night I thought I’d try to identify exactly where it was. So I spent about an hour when I should have been asleep prowling round the room with my ears pinned back, homing in on the source of the tapping. And eventually, although I was reluctant to believe my ears, it seemed quite clear that the sound was coming from inside a metal standard-lampey thingy - it’s one of those mother-and-child lamps (so I can read in bed) and the tapping seems to be inside the light bowl at the top.

The lamp is under a beam and clearly some wood dust has fallen onto it.

Could it be possible that the beetle has fallen out of the beam into the lamp and taken up residence there? Has anyone else ever known a vrillette to live in a lamp?

I guess the thing to do is to treat the beam and ignore the vrillette, he won’t be doing any damage where he is?


ha ha… Anna…

So is your DW beetle… "tapping on a lampost… in case a certain little lady comes by " :wink:

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LOL :laughing:

We rented a house in the Lot many years ago. It was obvious from the noise that there was deathwatch beetle in the beam above the bed. When we told the owners they seemed to think it was a bit of a joke and seemed to have no idea what deathwatch beetle was! I often wonder if the house is still standing…

My tutor when I was an undergraduate had one in his rooms and referred to it as a ‘Black Watch beetle’ which was rather marvellous, I thought; imagine a beetle with lovely tartan wing-cases and possibly spats.

Lovely picture ! in fact I suspect mine may be wearing spats and using them to kick the metal, that could be how he manages to make such a racket.

Actually, thinking about it, I’m not sure I know what spats are. Are they actually shoes, or just the top bit?

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The only way to control the death watch beetle population according to the ancient buildings society of GB is to run a dehumidifier until you reduce humidity in the house to 12 per cent…
Zyloprene won’t kill them off but it will kill you as it is a noxious poison. We have run dehumidifiers for the last 15 years in our 250 year old cottage and from seeing hundreds dead on the floor every April/May we now see about 5 dead on the stairs. It doesn’t cost very much to run 2 dehumidifiers round the clock all winter long to see results.

Thanks for that, hadn’t thought of keeping the dehumidifiers on.
Hundreds! yikes. Hopefully I haven’t got hundreds or I would have heard them before now.
Xylophène is indeed nasty stuff but very effective, and it does seem to work on infestations. It literally petrifies the wood, so larvae and insects can’t digest it. Whether petrifying the wood is a good idea is another question, well it’s not really a question is it because it obviously isn’t a good idea except as a last resort. In the case of my loft timbers it pretty much was a last resort, because they were so soft and spongy and eaten and crumbly when I bought the house that it was either Xylophène or replace. I tried Xylophène first hoping it would be a temporary fix while I decided what to do, the timbers went hard again and 10 years on they still are, with no further signs of infestation. I also used it on a spongy wall timber in the living room and over the next few months dozens of beetles fell out, but I don’t think they were death watch beetles. But I don’t want to start using it on the beams in the bedroom if I can help it, for obvious reasons, also the beams are pretty sound in themselves. So on with the dehumidifier, thanks for the tip.

They are a little raincoat for shoes, spatterdashes originally.