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1304 S. Commercial St.
Harrisonville, Missouri, 64701
United States

MO: (816) 765-6000 KS: (913) 451-2437

Stored Product Pests

Angoumois Grain Moth

Identification

This moth is a third of an inch long and pale yellow-brown in color with a wing span of one inch. Both wings end in a thumb-like projection.

Behavior

They prefer to feed on barley, rye, ears of corn, oats, rice and various seeds. Grain infested by the Angoumois grain moth larvae has an unpleasant smell, and is less attractive for consumption. Similar to weevils, the larvae develop in whole kernels or caked grain. The eggs are white when first deposited, but soon turn red. Full grown larvae are one-fifth inch long and white with a yellow head.

Habitat

Most problems with the Angoumois grain moth in corn occur in crib-stored ears, although the infestation may have begun in the field. Corn infested in the field may harbor larvae feeding within corn kernels.


Carpet Beetle

Identification

Adult carpet beetles are roughly an eighth of an inch in length and round. The larvae have small, quarter of an inch long bodies that are covered in hair.

Behavior

Carpet Beetle larvae tend to feed on materials like carpets, furs, wool, skins, leathers, silk and many plant products. The adults, however, prefer to feed on pollen and nectar from external flora. The adult will lay nearly a hundred eggs in the springtime, and they are usually attached to the food source. After a few weeks, the eggs hatch and the larval stage can survive long periods without food while molting as many as thirty times a day.

Habitat

Carpet Beetles are found most commonly at the site of infestation in carpeting, in closets with fur and wool clothing, and in attics.


Confused Flour Beetle

Identification

This insect is a shiny, flattened, oval, reddish-brown beetle about one-seventh of an inch long with wing covers that are ridged lengthwise and are sparsely punctured between the ridges. The antennae of the Confused Flour beetle gradually enlarge toward the tip, unlike the knobbed antennae of the Red Flour beetle, its close relative for which it is often mistaken.

Behavior

It generally feeds on finely ground or broken starch materials, such as flour or meal. Large numbers of dead bodies, cast skins, and fecal pellets, as well as liquids, can produce extremely pungent odors in grain and often it is the contamination cause by their presence, not their feeding, that makes them such a threat to stored food products.

Habitat

Adults and larvae feed on broken kernels and fine-grind materials in granaries, mills, warehouses, and other places where grain or grain products are stored.


Drugstore Beetle

Identification

Usually, it is only the adults that are seen, which are about an eighth of an inch long, range in color from light brown to red and have a distinctive "humpback" appearance. They are sometimes confused with a Cigarette beetle. Drugstore beetles have grooves running along their wing covers, while the wing covers of Cigarette beetles are smooth.

Behavior

Drugstore beetles feed on a variety of objects including leathers and furs, hair, drugs and books. With optimal conditions, these beetles can create as many as four generations in a single year, though it is more common to produce only one in residential locations. Like many other stored product pests, females lay their eggs in the very product they feed on. Infested foodstuffs should be discarded; other materials such as books and clothing can be treated.

Habitat

These beetles are typically found on their food source, typically stored items, including furs, leathers, books, and drugs – hence its name the drugstore beetle.


Furniture Beetle

Identification

Adult Furniture beetles are about an eighth of an inch long with mottled yellow, white or black scales and a white underside.

Behavior

Females can lay up to sixty eggs in places where the larvae will be able to feed. The larvae are half the size of adults and are covered in strips of stiff hair, giving them a distinct bristle-like appearance.

Habitat

These beetles are found all over the world and feed on a variety of materials including clothes, hair, furs, silk, leather, wool, and even dried cheese and dried blood. They also attack cotton, jute and even softwood, especially if is it soiled.


Granary Weevil

Identification

The adult granary weevil is a shiny reddish-brown with elongated pits on the thorax, while rice weevils are a dull reddish brown with round or irregularly shaped pits along the body. Both weevils have chewing mouthparts located at the end of their snouts or elongated heads.

Behavior

The granary weevil cannot fly, which also helps distinguish it from the rice weevil. However, both weevils feign death by drawing their legs close to the body, falling, and remaining still and silent when disturbed. As larvae, both granary weevils and rice weevils are legless, humpbacked, creamy white in color with a small, tan head. Like the rice weevil, the granary weevil lays its eggs within a kernel, which are rarely seen.

Habitat

These weevils are found in dry food goods storage. Their presence is typically noticed until after the weevil emerges as an adult from the grain, kernel or seed, leaving an exit hole as evidence. 


Indian Meal Moth

Identification

Adult Indian meal moths have a wingspan of roughly five eighths of an inch wide and the wings, which are copper and grey in color, fold backwards while at rest showing copper and grey bands.

Behavior

While the adults don't feed stored products, the larvae will eat coarse flour, seeds, chocolate, beans, peppers and spices, processed food and most products manufacture from these materials. The eggs are typically laid nocturnally and directly onto the material, and over a three-week period, an adult female will lay more than 400 eggs. Indian meal moths are a severe threat to both residential and commercial food storage locations.

Habitat

The larvae produce a silken web-like substance throughout the material they're eating and mature larvae tend to travel away from the food source in order to pupate, which is when homeowners may frequently find them in large numbers disperse across the entire room.


Larder Beetle

Identification

Larder beetles are roughly three eighths of an inch in length, dark brown, and have a distinctive band of white across their wing covers. The band typically has three dark spots placed symmetrically on each wing cover. With the naked eye, you can see it has clubbed antennae and its underside is covered with very fine yellow-white hairs.

Behavior

Larder beetles survive outside over the winter and begin entering homes and other buildings in the springtime. The adult female can lay up to a hundred eggs and place them on ready food material.

Habitat

They are foundand known to feed on a wide variety of materials like cured meats such as ham, bacon, dried beef and fish, also, cheeses, animal skins, feathers and animal horns. They are also attracted to dead animals and feces.


Red Flour Beetle

Identification

Closely related to the Confused Flour beetle and difficult to distinguish, the Red Flour beetle can be recognized by the shape of its antennae and the shape of the pronotum. Its antennae enlarge abruptly at the last segment, giving it an knobbed appearance and the pronotum (the segment directly behind the head) is wider toward the front. Also, the wing covers are not as ridged as the Confused Flour beetle's.

Behavior

The beetles do cause damage by feeding but probably cause more problems by contaminating the grain. Large numbers of dead bodies, cast skins, and fecal pellets, as well as liquids, can produce extremely pungent odors in grain.

Habitat

Both the Confused and Red Flour beetles cannot feed on whole undamaged grain; they are, however, often found among dust, fines, and dockage.


Rice Weevil

Identification

Adults are roughly an eighth of an inch in length, dull reddish-brown in color with red or yellow spots located on their wing covers, and have an elongated snout-like head.

Behavior

These weevils are strong, capable fliers and are known to fly from one food source to another with incredible speed and ease. The female rice weevil bores a hole into the kernel and lays her egg inside, easily laying up to 400 eggs in her lifetime. The larva hatches within a few days and immediately begins eating.

Habitat

Rice weevils primarily feed on grain, but will also infest any kind of whole grain, as well as nuts, beans and even some fruits. While they are more prevalent in southern states, rice weevil infestations can be found all over the world.


Sawtoothed Grain Beetle

Identification

Adults are small and thin, typically dark brown and less than a fourth of an inch long. These beetles are one of the most common threats to warehouses, factories, homes and granaries. They get their name from the six sawtooth-shaped teeth found on both sides of the pronotum, the first segment behind their head.

Behavior

Due to their size and flat shape, Sawtoothed Grain Beetles can fit easily in the cracks and crevices between food packages, penetrate the packaging and infest the product inside. In her lifetime, an adult female can lay nearly 300 of her shiny white eggs in the food the foodstuffs they are infesting.

Habitat

They feed on stored products such as flour, bread, and cereal, dried fruits and sugar, and even improperly cured meat.


Spider Beetle

Identification

While there are many different kinds of spider beetle, they all look similar with the same small ovular body but different coloring. They are less that thee sixteenths of an inch long with long legs covered with short hairs. They look very much like small spiders, hence the name.

Behavior

Spiders beetles are capable of remaining active during cold weather and can be very difficult to control due to their vast appetite for a variety of different products.

Habitat

Their larvae are laid directly on the food source and old storage building can harbor severe infestations without immediate, noticeable signs. Spider beetles are known to also bore into wood and cardboard.


Yellow Mealworm Beetle

Identification

These beetles are named for their larval appearance - bright yellow, hard-bodied and more than an inch in length. However, as adults, these beetles have large shiny, black bodies that are roughly half of an inch long with well-developed wings.

Behavior

They are strong fliers and are attracted to light. Adults lay nearly 300 eggs and live about three months; the entire life cycle lasts a full year.

Habitat

While they are rarely found in homes, Yellow Mealworm beetles are major pests in dark, undisturbed storage facilities.