Why You Need To Defend Against Pantry Pests This Holiday Season

family getting ready to bake cookies

Imagine getting ready for the holidays and inviting your grandkids, family, or neighbors over for a baking day only to discover beetles, weevils, or moths invading your pantry and stored foods. That would be terrible! It is best to protect yourself against these particular pantry pests before the holiday season begins. In this article, we will talk about these three pantry-invading insects: beetles, weevils, and moths.

Drugstore beetles tend to be reddish-brown to brown in color and grow up to ⅛” long. They have hard wings that show rows of pits that give a striped appearance. They lay eggs in foods like cereal, flour, bread, and spices. Once the larvae are developed, they will begin feeding on these foods as well as other dead insects.

Larder beetles are dark-brown to black in color with a lighter band across. They are relatively small, growing only to about ¼” in length. These beetles prefer animal products and will eat meats, cheese, dry pet food, dry tobacco, and other dry plants. Larder beetles also lay eggs in food sources.

Saw-toothed beetles are brown with flattened bodies that grow up to ⅛” long. They have rows of saw-like teeth behind their head. They will feed on just about anything including bread, cereal, flour, pasta, nuts, sugar, dried meat, fruit, and tobacco. These also lay eggs food for the larvae to consume once they are developed.

Confused flour beetles are the most common species of pantry beetles. They are both reddish-brown to brown in color and are about ⅛” in length. They both feed on flour, cereals, nuts, chocolate, and dried fruit and herbs at the larvae stage of development.

Weevils are very small, about 1/10” long, and are reddish-brown to black, with pits on the thorax region as well as yellow to red dots on the corners of their forewings. You can definitely spot a weevil by their distinct snout that accounts for ⅓ of its body length. The larvae will feed on seeds, corn, wheat, rice, beans, nuts, cereals, fruits, and stored cotton.

Indian meal moths have distinct wings where the front half is yellowish-gray, and the back half is a bronze or copper with a darker band. They are longer than most pantry pests and can grow up to ⅝” long. They are the most common culprit of contaminating food sources in your pantry by laying their eggs in dry food products because once they develop into larvae they will also start consuming the food. They tend to be attracted to chocolate, dry peppers, powdered milk, dog food, seeds, crackers, and granola.

All of these pantry pests can come into your home via the food itself, and sometimes they get in through small gaps and crevices in foundations and siding, as well as through broken or missing screens. These pests thrive especially well during the holidays as people stock up on groceries to prepare a variety of baked goods and meals for their families, friends, and neighbors.

So it might be a good idea, before the holidays, to call on the professionals at Quick-Kill Pest Eliminators in order to avoid pantry pests this holiday-baking season. Our professionals will provide quality treatment in Bettendorf and the Quad-Cities against pantry pests safely and effectively. Call us today for more information.

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