Confused Flour Beetle


Appearance: Reddish brown, with flat, oblong body; 1/8-inch.

Habitat
The confused flour beetle gets its name because it is often confused with its nearly identical relative the red flour beetle. The red flour beetle can fly, however, while the confused flour beetle cannot. Both beetles are most common in processed grain products, where their flattened bodies permit them to work their way into almost any package. Food heavily infested by these beetles often develop a grayish tint and take on an unpleasant odor. Confused flour beetles are capable of breeding year-round in heated buildings.

Diet
Flour beetles are scavengers that cannot attack whole grains: they must rely on other insects such as rice weevils or lesser grain borers to first damage the kernels. They are know as "bran bugs"because of their preference for flour and flour by-products.

Control
Discard all infested packages in outside trash receptacles. Clean spilled grain and infested cabinet areas using a vacuum followed by soapy water. Store all dried food goods in a glass or plastic container with a tight lid to limit spreading if one food becomes infested. Consider storing cereals and similar foods in the refrigerator to limit stored pantry pest problems.


 

Drugstore Beetle

Appearance: Reddish to dark brown, oval in shape; 1/10- to 1/8-inch; its head is not visible from above.

Habitat
The drugstore beetle's Latin name of paniceum was derived from its habit of feeding on bread. Its common name was given because it can be found infesting drugs and similar products. This beetle will literally feed on any dried, food-based material, especially dried pet foods, cereal products and spices. It may also damage books by feeding on the bindings. The drugstore beetle is more commonly found in regions with warmer climates or in heated structures in temperate climates.

Diet
Any food-based material such as dried pet foods, breads, cereal products, spices and drugs. The drugstore beetle has been observed damaging books by feeding on the bindings. It can be found worldwide, but is more common in warmer climates or in heated buildings in colder climates. Adults actively crawl and fly.

Control
Discard all infested packages. Clean spilled grain and infested cabinet areas using a vacuum followed by soapy water. Store all dried food goods in a glass or plastic container with a tight lid to limit spreading if one food becomes infested. Consider storing cereals and similar foods in the refrigerator to limit stored pantry pest problems.





Indian Meal Moth

Appearance: Reddish copper color on its otherwise white wings; small, up to 5/8-inch. The indianmeal moth was given its name after an insect scientist found it feeding on corn meal, also known as Indian meal.

Habitat
As a larva, the Indian meal moth spins a web around foods, rendering it unusable; grains, dried fruits, nuts, dog food, beans, etc. This moth usually enters homes in boxes or bags of infested foods. It appears in all points of the food processing chain and is the most common moth of stored, dried foods, as well as the pest moth most often seen in homes. Adult meal moths tend to avoid light and rest quietly on walls and ceilings, becoming active after dusk.

Diet
A wide variety of food items including flour, cereal, nuts, grains, chocolate, birdseed and dried pet foods .

Control
All dried food products need to be inspected, along with spices, potpourri and stored bird seed. Discard all infested packages and products. Clean spilled grain and infested cabinet areas using a vacuum followed by soapy water. Store all dried food goods in a glass or plastic container with a tight lid to limit spreading if one food becomes infested. Consider storing cereals and similar foods in the refrigerator to limit stored pantry pest problems.





Rice Weevil

Appearance: Dark brown with four light-colored patches on its wings; the head extends into a long thin "beak." 1/8-inch in length.

Habitat
Rice weevils attack whole grains such as wheat, corn, barley and rice. In homes, infestations are generally found in bird seed, nuts, decorative Indian corn and, in rare instances, in old pasta stored in cupboards. The rice weevil and its close relative the granary weevil do more damage to stored whole grains worldwide than any other pest.

Diet
Rice weevils primarily whole grains, but also eat beans, nuts, cereals and fruit.

Control
All products containing whole grains need to be inspected, along with decorative items such as Indian corn and shadow boxes containing seeds. Discard all infested packages and products. Clean spilled grain and infested cabinet areas using a vacuum followed by soapy water. Store all dried food goods in a glass or plastic container with a tight lid to limit spreading if one food becomes infested. Consider storing cereals and similar foods in the refrigerator to limit stored pantry pest problems.





Saw-Toothed Grain Beetle


Appearance: Brown, very flat, narrow oval shape; 1/10-inch

Habitat
Saw-toothed grain beetles like to attack packages of cereal, flour, rice, oats, pet foods, chocolate, pasta and the like. They are found in pantries or in food processing areas, warehouses and grocery stores. They crawl into packaging to eat, live and reproduce. Large populations can develop in short periods, forcing adults to leave infested foods seeking new food sources. Infestations can quickly spread to every nearby packaged food. The saw-toothed grain beetle cannot fly, but the closely-related merchant grain beetle can.

Diet
Cereals, cake mixes, macaroni, cookies and chocolate, among other processed or packaged foods.

Control
Discard all infested packages. Clean spilled grain and infested cabinet areas using a vacuum followed by soapy water. Store all dried food goods in a glass or plastic container with a tight lid to limit spreading if one food becomes infested. Consider storing cereals and similar foods in the refrigerator to limit stored pantry pest problems.