Spider beetles in general are omnivores, and this species is known to feed as a scavenger on many foods such as dried mushrooms, animal feces, feathers, dead insects, dried fruit, grains, etc. It is partial to materials that may be in poor condition, somewhat damp, and moldy, and its presence may indicate an unsanitary condition that should be discovered and removed or cleaned. Damage to books or other non-food items occurs as the larvae bore into them to construct a chamber or cell in which to pupate. Spider beetles derive this name due to their appearance. They have very round elytra, a round thorax, and long, thin antennae and legs, and in general present the appearance of a small, hump-backed spider. They are resistant to cold temperatures, making them more difficult to control by this method.
Control of dampness and spoilage of food materials is important, as these beetles are drawn to foods in poor condition. Sanitation to eliminate the accumulation of dead insects or animal carcasses, or the feces of birds or rodents, will decrease the occurrence of the beetles in a structure.