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Learning More About Pantry Pests
What are pantry pests? These pests are often referred to as stored product pests because they can live inside of packages of processed and dried foods. If you have flour, dry pasta, dry pet food, cereal, or crackers at home, there is a risk that you have a pantry pest infestation. While various pests fit into this category, the most common pantry pests include saw-toothed grain beetles, cigarette beetles, and Indian meal moths. These pests live in your food products, so they are constantly eating.
As a result, pantry pests often produce two or three generations annually. Although it may seem like it, their presence doesn’t mean that your home isn’t clean.
Pantry Pests Appearances
Indian Meal Moth
Indian meal moths are small moths that have reddish-brown forewings. Their back half features a coppery color, while the front is whitish gray. Indian meal moth larvae are responsible for damaging your food. They’re aggressive, so they’ll consume a handful of dried foods. Once Indian meal moths have entered your home, they’ll be difficult to eliminate.
Saw-Toothed Grain Beetle
Saw-toothed grain beetles are one of the most common pantry pests in the United States. They have slender bodies and grow roughly a tenth of an inch, and teeth projections that look like saws. They’re located on each side of the insect’s thorax. Larvae and adult saw-toothed grain beetles will consume and damage your dried foods.
Saw-toothed grain beetles are scavengers that will feed on flour, cereal, candy, dried pet food, and dried fruit.
These light-brown pests grow up to an eighth of an inch. They’re hump-backed with smooth wings and fuzzy body hairs. While cigarette beetles primarily feed on tobacco products, they can also be found in cereal boxes, pet foods, and candy. They’ll also live in certain spices.
What Causes Pantry Pests?
In most cases, you’ll bring pantry pests into your home without realizing it. You might’ve bought a bag of cereal that had Indian meal moths. Now, the pests have spread to other food products throughout your home. It only takes a few insects to create a large infestation. Since they live in their food source, they can rapidly reproduce. It is common for pantry pests to create several generations annually.
Signs Of A Pantry Pest Infestation
You likely won’t be able to detect the infestation until it has spiraled out of control. Pantry pests live in their food sources so they can hide easily. You’ll likely find moths flying around your kitchen or you might find beetles residing near your food boxers. Another thing to remember is that pantry pests are attracted to light so they’ll fly toward light sources.
Is A Pantry Pest Dangerous?
Most pantry pests are not dangerous since they don’t bite or attack humans. However, you don’t want to live them in your home. The problem is that they’re going to destroy your food. You’ll need to replace the food, and that can be costly. Even if you ingest pantry pests or their eggs, it won’t cause problems. Most do not spread diseases so you won’t need to worry about that.
Preventing Pantry Pest Infestations
To prevent pantry pests, you need to follow the advice provided below.
- Dry pantry food products need to be properly sealed in air-tight containers. Don’t use paper or cardboard containers because the larvae will chew through these materials.
- Be sure to clean your shelves thoroughly. Get rid of crumbs on your pantry shelves.
- When buying new food products, never add them to old food products. Instead, clean the container and get rid of the old food.
- You can test to see if your food is contaminated by placing it in a plastic bag and sitting it aside. If it is infested, you’ll notice pantry pests in the bag without a month.
What Is The Best Way To Eliminate Pantry Pests?
It is hard to get rid of pantry pests, but not impossible. The problem is that pantry pests blend in well with their environment so you won’t be able to see them. If you want to tackle the problem on your own, use the tips provided below.
- Get rid of any infested items. Be sure to seal them in a plastic bag before getting rid of them.
- All items need to be removed from your pantry shelves. Then, you’ll want to clean and vacuum the shelves thoroughly. The vacuum’s contents need to be disposed of in a sealed, plastic bag.
- Be sure to wipe down all surfaces and walls in your pantry.
Unfortunately, many over-the-counter chemicals designed to eliminate pantry pests are dangerous and ineffective. If you’re worried about the risks, work with a professional. Don’t mix pesticides because that could be dangerous. You’ll want to pick us. We offer cost-effective, reliable pantry pest removal services. Pick us because we won’t let you down.
When Can You Get Started?
Is Your Pantry Pest Treatment Safe?
Our company tries hard to provide its clients with lightning-fast, safe results. We offer natural services but may need to use conventional chemicals. If so, we’ll use EPA-registered products and follow strict guidelines to keep you safe. Our technicians are trained so they won’t put your loved ones in danger.
Can I Prevent Pantry Pest Infestations?
While you can try, you likely won’t be able to prevent all pantry pest infestations. However, you can take steps to stop many problems. For instance, you’ll want to check all of your food products before bringing them inside. Make sure that your cereal, cracks, bread, and other items are free of pests. Once you’ve done that, you can bring them inside.