indian meal moth on wall

Are you familiar with what a pantry pest is? If we were to throw a few names at you, such as cigarette beetle, drugstore beetle, Indian meal moth, rice weevil, or flour weevil, would you be able to recognize any of these as pantry pests? If so, you're ahead of the game. Pantry pests, also called stored products pests, are some of the most misunderstood pests that invade homes in Hartford County. You can probably tell by the names that beetles, moths, and weevils are the pests that get into your pantry. Let's take a look at how this happens, and at what you need to know in order to avoid eating these insects.

Breeding

Many of the pests that invade your pantry are pests that live outside your home. While pantry pests can get in from the outside, it is more likely that they will hitch a ride into your pantry because, unlike outside pests, pantry pests lay their eggs in the foods you store in your pantry, foods such as flour, rice, spaghetti, cereal, spices, seeds, popcorn, nuts, cornmeal, and more. This usually happens before these products are put on the shelves inside your home. Outside pests lay eggs in the ground, in trees, in trash cans, and in many other exterior sources. When they come to feed on your stored foods they usually get in and get out.

General Prevention

While pantry pests are more likely to hitchhike into your home, it is still important to consider general prevention. Beetles, weevils, and moths do live outside. It is just that they tend to be near farms and land that has exterior food sources. If you have a garden in your yard, you could have these pests in your yard. Consider these tips:

  • Make sure all of your screens are in good working condition. These are your frontline defense.

  • Inspect the frames around your windows to make sure there are no tiny gaps that pests can use to get around your screens.

  • Inspect your foundation walls, particularly around pipes and wire conduit. If you find gaps, fill them in. A caulking gun is a good tool for this job.

  • Inspect your exterior walls. Pay close attention to exterior doors. There are many ways a pest can get past your doors. Gaps in weather stripping, damaged door sweeps, holes in frames, and gaps around frames are all ways that pests get inside.

  • Seal any gaps, cracks, or holes in your pantry. If pests get into your home, this can make it a little more difficult for them to get into your pantry.

Pantry Pest Prevention and Management

How do you stop a hitchhiking pest from getting into your home? The first step is to check items when you're at the store. If you see a tear or hole, avoid purchasing that product. Also, make sure to check to make sure items are not past due. Being diligent to examine the items you buy can help you get off on the right foot. Once the items are in your home, consider putting your pantry items in sealed glass or plastic containers. Here are a few reasons why:

  • If you buy a product that is infested, you may see evidence of the infestation as you pour the product into your container.

  • If you have eggs in one of your products, a glass container can help you to see larvae movement, webs being created, or adult insects crawling around.

  • A sealed container will prevent an infestation from spreading to other stored foods. Some pantry pests can chew through paper, plastic, and cardboard.

  • A sealed container will keep all pests from getting into your food.

  • A good seal will keep smells from escaping. Insects can track smells to find food.

Keep This In Mind

If your pantry becomes infested with a pest, remember that the team at American Pest Solutions can help you solve this problem. We use trusted strategies for locating pests, isolating infestations, and treating areas that need to be treated. Our service team members have the experience and training to deal with these and other pests that get into kitchens and pantries. Reach out to us for service. We can help.

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