If you love grains like rice, cereal, noodles, popcorn, and crackers, you aren’t alone. There are also plenty of insects that thrive on a heavy diet of these delicious carbohydrates. You may have even had the unfortunate experience of stumbling upon these little critters in your pantry or even in your food.
Granary Weevils (Attribution: CSIRO; wikimedia CC3.0)
Pantry pests include a variety of moths, beetles, and weevils that eat, live in and reproduce in various grains that are common in household pantries. Since houses are always kept warm, pantry pests can be a year round problem. You may not even know that there are bugs living in your pantry until you begin noticing large numbers of adult bugs. Unfortunately, where there are adult bugs, there are also plenty of eggs, larva, and pupa nearby. It’s alarming to find bugs in your food, but luckily, there are some fairly easy ways to prevent these pantry pests.
Cleanliness: Prevention begins with cleanliness. While it is nearly impossible to have a perfectly clean home, the more you can do to maintain cleanliness in your kitchen, the better. Do this by wiping down counters often, sweeping and vacuuming floors regularly to prevent crumbs, and rotating and disposing of old food in your cupboards.
Food Storage: How you store your food is also important in preventing insects. Many beetles and weevils can actually bore through food packaging, so if you want to be sure that no bugs are getting into your food, store your flour, rice, baking mixes, cereal, etc. in sealed containers that are made out of glass, heavy plastic, or metal. This ensures that no bugs will be able to get in, and if the eggs actually originated in the store-bought food, they will be contained and easy to dispose of when they hatch.
Smart Purchasing: When you are at the grocery store, check to ensure that all packages are sealed with no holes. If there is any visible damage, do not buy it. Also, try to remember to purchase food in sizes and quantities that you can use relatively quickly (2-4 months). Having open packages in your pantry for an extended amount of time can make it more likely for problems with pests. Lastly, when you bring home grains from the grocery store (flour, oatmeal, baking mixes, etc.), you can put them in the freezer for a week before using them. This method will kill any eggs that may already be present in the package.
Hopefully, with these prevention tips, you will be able to keep your pantry pest-free. Six Brothers Pest Control is dedicated to helping you understand and deal with all of the household pests that may come your way. We are a family owned and operated company that wants to earn your business and trust. If you are in need of Kansas City Pest Control, give us a call today.