What In The World Are Drugstore Beetles?
Drugstore beetles are considered pantry pests and commonly infest a wide variety of foods, including those made from dried plant or animal products. Reddish-brown in color, the drugstore beetle is oval in shape and is about 1/8 inch long. The drugstore beetle gained its name from its tendency of feeding on pharmacy drugs. In addition to prescription drugs, drugstore beetles often feed on spices, seeds, dried pet foods, bread and other flour products including cereals, cookies, dry mixes and meal. The beetles sometimes feed on non-food items such as wool, leather, books, wooden objects and even tin or aluminum foil. The entire lifecycle of a drugstore beetle lasts about two to seven months. The beetle will generally cause most of its damage in the larval stage. A female drugstore beetle will lay up to 100 eggs on its food source. For about four to twenty weeks, the small, white larvae burrow through the food and consume it before building a cocoon and pupating within the span of 12 to 18 days. Drugstore beetles can be distinguished from cigarette beetles by their smooth antennae that end in a 3-segmented club and their striated wing covers.
As their name suggests, drugstore beetles will feed on drugs in pharmacies but will also infest coffee beans, flour, wheat, dry pet food and cereals as well as many other items commonly found in pantries.
Drugstore beetles are not considered harmful to humans or pets. Their habit of infesting people food and pet food make them a nuisance pest.
Because of their ability to infest a variety of food products, drugstore beetles are difficult to control. Call in American Pest to take control of the situation.
Controlling pantry pests can be a tedious task because the source of the infestation may be difficult to find. Food products, including dried pet food must be examined carefully for signs of infestation and should be stored in tightly sealed containers. Infested food or floral arrangements should be discarded. Freezing susceptible food items can prevent infestation as well as kill drugstore beetles that have infested food products. Since drugstore beetles may be found in other areas of the home as well, an American Pest professional will locate less obvious infestation sources and treat the area(s) with the appropriate products.
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Inspecting food items before bringing them home from the store can help prevent drugstore beetle infestations. Store food products in tightly sealed containers to keep food from being infested. Avoid mixing new and old foods, since old food products may already be contaminated. Carefully monitor pantries for spilled food and establish a regular schedule for cleaning the pantry.
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